The forecast this week is for the temperatures to be in the teens. It will be a very cold January. Therefore, I am focusing on recalling those summer days when it was extremely warm, hitting 100 degrees. Most people can remember events that happened when the thermometer registered over the century mark. I am thinking of those days wearing shorts, light tee-shirts, and sandals!
There was a Saturday one Westchester County morning back in the 1980s at the New York Athletic Club that I can recall instantly. I played a three-set tennis match (7-6 6-7 7-5) against one Thomas Davidson that started at 9 am and ended just before 1 pm. The epic match went on without either of us ever leaving the court. The temperature on the court was 103 degrees when it ended. There was a round thermostat on the fence surrounding the court. Looking at it was surreal.
The match really ended because Davidson had a wedding to go to and started to hit low percentage shots. What do I remember most about that day? Right after the match being told I had 20 minutes before my next match. Very luckily my opponent defaulted after the third game of that match with a hamstring pull. So, I decided to go to the club pool. When I arrived, everyone was standing in the pool, not moving. The pool was a sea of upper torsos standing very close to each other because the huge Olympic-size pool was too crowded for anyone to actually swim.
Another triple-digit day I remember occurred when I lived in the Springs of East Hampton Town. Back then I had a VW Cabrio convertible. The freon for the air conditioner in the car hadn’t been serviced for quite a while. I never used the A/C. In fact, I drove around with the top down from March to November. That day I felt like I was driving around in an oven with sun beating down brutally. I remember thinking, “So this is what it’s like driving in the Sahara Desert.” Having black seats isn’t a plus on hot days in a convertible either.
How about how walking on the sand at the beach when it’s really hot and sunny during the summer? One time I was swimming at a crowded ocean beach and got lost! I wear glasses and without them, I really can’t see. When I went into the ocean to cool down, over time the current moved me down the beach substantially. While swimming in the ocean I never wear my glasses, especially when the waves are breaking. Afterwards, when I finally got out of the water, I had no idea where my towel was. I started walking up and down the shore searching for my towels. All that time my feet were being scorched by the hot sand. Eventually, someone from my group spotted me and walked me back.
Folks who live in Montauk know that when it’s 100 degrees in NYC, it’s at least ten degrees cooler there. However, when it’s cold in NYC it’s just as cold in Montauk. I had the water pipes freeze twice while living in Montauk. Without running water, I had to use my Gurney’s V.I.P. Spa pass (thank you Ingrid Lemme) to shower, shave, and so forth there for a whole week. Swimming in their indoor heated pool when it’s extremely cold is always fun. I also enjoy walking the ocean shore when it’s cold. Weirdly, it cleanses my mind. After using the spa, I used to take a walk on Gurney’s beach.
Finally, who hasn’t had a flat tire when it’s cold? It’s funny how such things never happen on beautiful days. Instead, flat tires seem to happen when it’s really cold, raining hard or perhaps snowing. Thank goodness the new tire technology has cut back on flat tires because I have so much stuff in my trunk on top of the spare tire it will be quite the sight clearing out my trunk!