Trying to build a blog from the bottom, I’ve asked myself what might be some basic topics to touch on early in the game. After a long day of sweating, and receiving a bad sunburn, I thought the heat would be appropriate.
Having just lived one of the coolest summers on record in Michigan, I forgot the power of the sun, even if it is 93 million miles away from Earth’s front door. Each day near the equator is intense. The sun beats down on you in a way that it doesn’t on the hottest day of the year in Michigan.
A group of us left the hotel at 6:00 a.m. to go for a morning run. At 6:00 a.m. the sun isn’t too bad; by 6:15 the sun is hot, and by 9:00 a.m. you would think it was high noon. After our sweaty run along the seawall, we headed into Apia to buy cell phones and look around. When we left the hotel, some trainees were applying sun block. I told myself, I didn’t need sun block, I don’t burn easily and we would be walking in and out of stores. It was hot today, although I don’t think as hot as yesterday, but by the time we returned to the hotel in the early afternoon, I had been burned on my neck with a farmer’s tan I hadn’t seen in a long time.
Living hear involves not only sweating, but wearing it, smelling it, and trying to clean it off. I’ve given up on the last. If you take a shower, you only find your efforts to be wasted because by the time you walk down the stairs, you’ve begun to perspire. I’m learning how to deal with it.
Of course, after sweating, clothes are wet, but it’s hard to dry those clothes without a dryer. I could try to find a place to hang them in the sun, and that might be a little ironic to hang the problem in front of the cause, but regardless, it would work. However, my clothes lines here at the hotel are limited, so the clothes hang in the room on hangers, chair backs, backpacks etc. In the end, they remain damp and leave a weird smell hanging in the room that reminds me of a boy’s gym locker.
For all the complaining I do, the sun and heat make life so enjoyable, and a part of why two different cruise ships have docked hear in the past couple of days. The sun also helps make snorkeling in the 80 water a little more tolerable. Heat allows for towering palm trees, banana trees, and rainforests to grow, making this country a little more exotic.
I"ve talked to current volunteers, and they say that we will get use to the heat. That makes me feel better. For all the complaining that I have just done about the heat, please know that I love the heat. Weather makes us funny and plays with our mind. No matter how hot and humid it may become here in Samoa, I will stay refreshed knowing I will be avoiding all snow for the next two years. Until next time we meet, so long from the South Pacific!