I opened the front door this morning, two little dogs in tow, and had to pause. “Wait a minute, it’s cooler outside than it is inside our air-conditioned house…” Made me wonder for a moment if I was still in Texas, home of the 110 degree summer. Just last week, our new veterinarian was telling me about how many paw burns she’d had to treat recently and warning me not to walk the dogs mid-day.
And yes, I actually needed that warning. I mean, we have lived in 110 degree weather before. This summer alone, Iowa had a stretch when it regularly broke 100. But it felt so much hotter in Iowa. Yes, you read that right – Iowa feels hotter. It’s that darned humidity. Humidity makes the heat hang in the air, like a giant ocean of “hot,” and every movement in that ocean feels like a slow-motion fight against the waves. All I want to do in an Iowa summer is lie flat on my back, spread-eagle, with a fan blowing an air-conditioned breeze over my entire body. Iowa heat is exhausting.
Texas heat is dry heat – no humidity. Now, don’t get me wrong, if you stand in the sun – well, heaven help you and your skin. The sun is so bright here, it makes my eyes water without sunglasses. But if you find a place of shade…heat, what heat? It’s like two separate weather universes!
For example, our back patio has a slight overhang that is offers at least 3 ft of shad all day long. My dog, Bagel, loves to lay in the sun and he’ll lie in the sunny patch on our patio until he starts to pant. Then he curls up under the shade of the overhang to cool down. And then he heads back into the sunshine. He could do that all day – Out of the sun, into the sun, out of the sun, into the sun. But that’s the great thing about Texas heat – it is hotter than all get out standing directly in the rays, but find a piece of shade and it’s like finding an entirely new season.
So yes, I did need that warning from my vet last week. Today, however, it might actually be…cool 🙂