We’re Having a Heatwave

Brampton garden July 19

This morning, to avoid the heat of the day, I went for a walk at six o’clock. The Brampton gardens were empty. The scent of roses was almost overpowering, the sensory garden was redolent with the aroma of bay, lavender and mint.

In the house, the curtains are drawn, the blinds down, the windows open. Because much of the house faces north, the living room is lovely and cool and we spend most of our time there, Mike watching cricket while I read. In a way it’s like being on holiday, especially as it is too hot to do anything like housework.

Meanwhile the news is full of doom and gloom. The UK is due to suffer the highest temperatures ever recorded. There is a red alert, which means there is considerable risk to life. If you are old, or young, or out in the sun then you are in grave danger.

And when you have finished worrying about all that, then panic about the state of our planet, which is about to frazzle to a crisp.

It’s not that I’m not taking any of this seriously, but we do need to keep a sense of proportion.

On a practical level, keeping indoors, wearing sun hats and sun cream and staying hydrated will protect most of us from the lethal effects of the high temperatures.

On a more serious level, while this is indeed the effect of climate change, maybe, just maybe governments will finally take this as a warning that something must be done about reducing our emissions. We know what we must do. It is all possible, what we lack is the political will to do it.

If raging forest fires and cancelled trains can goad politicians into action, then coping with these hot days will be worth it. Here’s hoping. And more than a little praying.

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