Scenes from a sultry Milam summer
Summer temperatures in this state can wilt even the toughest Texan. Last year, just the thought of going outside any time after noon broke a sweat on my forehead.
The heat is on, and it’s likely to stay awhile. Luckily, there are ways to beat the summer heat this year.
If you plan to be outside, either for work or play, don’t forget the basics when it comes to health and safety. Here are seven ways to beat the Texas summer heat:
1. Don’t blow hot air. Whether it’s a tractor or a Tuscan-style mansion, your AC could likely use some TLC.
If it’s been awhile since your air conditioning unit has seen a flashlight, take a look around and make sure to always replace the filters.
The weather is warm, so try a quick dinner on the grill or go for something simple and cool from the fridge.
Another reason to eat your greens this summer is to avoid that sluggish feeling brought on after a greasy, heavy meal.
Swap the fat for vegetables and fruit that are filled with water and will work to keep you cool.
3. Eliminate drying time. I remember helping my grandma hang up clothes in her backyard on the line. People have dried their clothes for centuries that way.
Opting for the old-fashioned route to dry your duds is a good way to cut down on electricity and heat-f low through your house.
There’s even a chance a fellow Texan grew the cotton that made your shorts or dress. Don’t forget the hat.
5. Time it right. At the peak of Texas summer heat, there is hardly a good time to be outside.
If you must be outside, try to get your work and play done in the mornings and evenings. Skip the hottest part of the day—your body will thank you later.
6. Chill out. As a kid battling the West Texas summer heat, Popsicles were among my favorite weapons.
Not crazy about all the sugar in store-bought Popsicles? You can make your own with fruit juice.
7. Hydrate much and hydrate often. It’s all about hydration. Keep water handy at all times when working or playing outside. More than 200,000 Americans are hospitalized each year for dehydration.
It’s August in Milam County.
Thats hardly news, of course but August is sort of special in an “un-special” sort of way.
It’s the only month without a major holiday, if you grant the calendar whim that Easter is shared between March and April.
Still, August has its charms, if we just take a step back and look for them.
DON’T SWEAT IT
The year’s eighth month, so hot and sticky,
But Texans just can’t get too picky.
Every month still has its pleasures,
Sweet little moments, surprising treasures.
Like summer moons, so full, so round,
New-mown hay, stacked on the ground.
Whirling sprinklers’ soft wet aroma.
We’re not as hot as Oklahoma!
Each evening, walkers hit our street,
Burning up calories, burning up feet.
Summer’s the time to slow the pace,
A backward step from our daily race.
To calm our nerves, soothe our fidgets,
Not hard to do in triple digits.
But we’ll get by, yes one and all,
For up ahead, here comes the fall.
Some Arctic air, up north of Nome,
Thinks of inching southward toward our home.
Just keep that hope, though please remember,
It may not happen unt il November! —Mike Brown