|Tegan helps her aunt fix a flat tire|
beside an English road during winter.
Right now, San Diego is undergoing a heat wave. Temperatures along the coast are expected to rise into the mid-to-high '80s, with temperatures inland rising into triple digits. Our house doesn't have air conditioning. Nor, as it's along the coast, do we even have insulation. So it grows hotter during the day each summer, and retains that heat in the evenings. We've taken measures, like opening the windows at 6 a.m., and turning on the fans, then closing up the windows around midmorning, and then opening them back up again in the late afternoon. During the afternoon, I have to shut the computer and do something else, as my little laptop computer generates enough additional heat to make me sweat. This weekend, we spent much of each day in stores, restaurants, and the cinema, in part to enjoy cooler temperatures. This kept our spirits merry, but gave us headaches from exchanging long periods of air conditioning with the temperature outside.
On the commentary for the Doctor Who story "Logopolis," one of the topics discussed is the weather. Janet Fielding, who played aspiring airline stewardess Tegan, remarks on how bitterly cold she found filming this story. She had recently emigrated from Queensland, Australia, which she described as a tropical climate in comparison to England in winter. You can see the fog streaming out of the actors' mouths when they breathe and speak. Christopher H Bidmead, who wrote the story, contended that she was pretty well covered-up in the scene. Janet Fielding suggested that, next winter, he should dress up as an airline stewardess, with a short skirt and nothing but stockings to cover her legs, and then tell her how warm he was.
Tom Baker, who played the Doctor in this story, enjoyed a much warmer costume, with his long, thick coat and even longer scarf. He, like many older British actors, had since moved to France to escape the English winters. But after living there for a few years, he complained that he had gotten tired of all the heat, and was buying a house in Royal Tunbridge Wells, and looking forward to returning to the cooler temperatures of England.
Last October, when my wife and I attended the World Fantasy Convention in Brighton, a storm blew in along the coast, bringing with it rain, fog, and wind. We'd step outside, get wet, hurled about, and have to watch our feet to keep from getting wet or muddy. After that, we spent a week in London. During the first few days, we toured the museums, but even they were cold inside. So we spent the rest of our days outside, enjoying the parks, and other historical sites. After a few hours of shivering, we climbed onto a bus to get out of the wind, or ducked into a store for awhile to escape the wind, or decided to sit down for awhile and enjoy a cup of hot tea and watch the rain pour down outside. Whenever my wife looks back on that trip, she feels kind of sad, as we are always bundled up in our coats and hats in our photos. But at the time we didnt let it get us down, and forced ourselves to get out and enjoy our vacation as much as we could.
Last night, we found an automated call from the power company on our answering machine, asking us to conserve electricity today, especially between the hours of 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. Schools are operating on a reduced schedule throughout San Diego, especially those without air conditioning. As for me, I'll be closing up the windows, and keeping the appliances off. Instead of working on the computer, I'll probably be working with pen and paper this afternoon. If the heat exhausts me, then I'll read a book: a real book that is, not an ebook off my laptop. Above all, I'll be thinking of how cold it was in England last October and November. I might have gotten a head cold during that trip, but hey, at least I wasn't sweating, right?
It's interesting how fickle we can be at times, isn't it? But hey, I'm hot!