Men’s stiff collars wilted by nine in the morning. Ladies bathed before noon, after their three-o’clock naps, and by nightfall were like soft teacakes with frostings of sweat and sweet talcum
In a rare outbreak of good taste, a regular contender in Facebook’s Top Five London Books is Harper Lee’s wonderfully evocative To Kill A Mockingbird. And no moment of the book is more evocative than this depiction of the Deep Southern heat.
As I write, London is baking in its fifth successive day of sunshine, cloudless skies and mid 20′s heat. While the debate will rage over whether this is BoJo’s doing, or whether the weather is playing a cruel trick at our expense, it’s unseasonably hot here, and collars are indeed melting. I’ve become accustomed to a certain degree of stickiness in every bit of me, and in everything I touch. Unusually, it has more to do with the heat than with residue of belgian buns.
So I’m in the comparative cool of the office, not relishing leaving for once. I’ve been drinking all day (water, you understand) and I feel ready to face the world but… everything’s so much effort, isn’t it? Work’s too much effort, not working is too much effort. Accursed lethargy.
So is this to do with global warming? I like to run with a sensationalist over-dramatisation every now and then, so I’m going to assume: yes. I have to confess, there are times when global warming seems a little bit distant to my life, and easily pretendable that it’s just not there. But I can’t deny that the summers are hotter these days, the winters are milder, the bananas are growing in Tottenham, soon cactus will be outdoor plants… It’s inevitable, and all our fault. It’s also easy to pass climate change off as a little irrelevant – I live on high ground, I’m not going to suffer - but in actual fact, living in this western, affluent apathy is probably going to ruin the lives of the world’s most vulnerable: those in Bangladesh, Norfolk, etc.
So I have my compost bin, I have the recycling box, I don’t use the ‘extra spin’ button on the washing machine… But surely there’s more I can do? Could I give up my car? Could I offset my carbon emissions (whatever that means)? Do I have to be vegetarian? I hope not. I’m sure I can do something though – if this keeps up I’m going to have to don the Colonel’s white suit and start mopping my brow out of habit.
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