Sunday, July 17, 2011
Hot under the (shirt) collar
It's been baking in Tokyo over the past couple of weeks or so.
As I teach my students new adjectives to replace the just plain inadequate 'hot' (think roasting, cooking, etc), I'm enjoying the weather.
When I first came to Tokyo 10 summers ago, it was overcast, humid as heck and sticky. The kind of heat we're getting now, while it occasionally tumbles back into that Tokyo cliché, is more like that I remember from Australia: a blue sky, sizzling sun and high temperatures.
I other words I love it - except when I have to go to work, wearing a darn tootin' suit. Ack.
The problem may be that other people, not quite so fond of the scorched-earth temperatures and affected by the power shortages caused by the loss of power from the Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear plant (and others since shut down), will find it hard going and health concerns like heat stroke are already in play.
The Japanese government has appealed for people to save on electricity by raising the temperature settings on air conditioners to a minimum of 28°C.
Most people are also hesitant about heading off to the local beaches since there's that nuclear hazard still pumping away up north-east, and related "hot-spots" (of the radioactive rather than sun-related kind) popping up around the city.
Last summer went on record as Japan's hottest ever; now we have summer 2011 to look forward to. P'raps luckily I'll be whizzing down to Melbourne in August for a couple of weeks, to torture myself with a temperature about 30 degrees lower.
Then again, give me the sun, a t-shirt (sans witless collar) and shorts, plus a chilled beer in a park, and I'll be fine. Maybe an el cheapo wading pool to dip my feet in would just add to the attraction?