Saturday, August 1, 2015

On the Road: Hot, Hot, Hot

Mojave Desert, 2011
Mojave Desert, 2011 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
This has been a rainy summer. The weather has been such that many in our area have felt they have been experiencing a prolonged spring. That changed this week and we are enjoying temperatures in the high 80's and low 90's. Finally!! This type of weather brings with it the chance of dehydration and heat stroke. These conditions can sneak up on an individual and it becomes a concern to those who travel alone.

People in my neighborhood are surprised when I tell them I frequently suffer from dehydration and heat exhaustion. They know if I turn on my air conditioning for two days a summer, that is a lot for me. I seldom feel the need to do so. Even when the inside temp is 84, the house feels cool to me. If the temp is in the 90's, my neighbor will tell me if I do not turn on the AC, he will do it for me. When I mow the lawn on a hot day, someone will come out with water for me or to alert me my face is really red. They caution me to be careful. While on the road, I do not have anyone to notice if I am slipping to a problem.

When I travel, I try my best to stay hydrated. Sometimes I get involved in an activity and do not notice the signs of dehydration or heat exhaustion. When I fail to prevent these conditions, I have with me EmergenC to put in a drink. Since it is in a foil pouch, I am able to keep it in the glove compartment in case I need it. That helps me deal with my dehydration better than anything else. When I am hiking, I will take some tea and some water with me. I drink the water first while it is still cold. Later when the contents of the bottle I am carrying get hot, I find it easier to drink tea than to drink hot water. Also I take along EmergenC to put in the tea. In addition, before I hike, I make sure I eat something. I am more prone to heat exhaustion if I do an activity on an empty stomach. That includes enjoying boating or swimming! When I know I am overheated, I get a drink and I find some water and put it on my wrists. For me, putting my wrists in cold water cools me off immediately.

Hot weather also affects items in the car whether someone is traveling or is just running errands at home. In particular, I take care to make sure I drive with only one or two cds in the car. I make a copy of the original cd and take the copy in the car. If the cd gets ruined by the heat, I will just make another copy of the original, which is stored in the house. If I am shopping and need to purchase an item that could be adversely affected by the heat, I buy it just before I head home in an air conditioned car. These may seem like common sense issues to state, but keep in mind that some people still leave their children or pets in hot cars. Sometimes common sense things need to be discussed as often as possible.

High temperatures are create problems for travelers or for anyone. Heat can wreck vacationers' health and property. Respecting the power of heat is important.

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