I have mentioned before, but in case I haven’t made it quite clear, it is REALLY HOT here. In fact, last week Thursday a city in Gifu set the record for highest temperature ever recorded in Japan. EVER! Since the 1800’s. It is amazing hot. Hot like I have never felt before. I’m sure that you are getting the idea. The record temerature was 40.6 degrees celsius, for those of you that work in fahrenheit, it was 105.6 degrees. I know it sounds like it could be just a regular old hot day, but when you combine those temperatures with 90-95% humidity, the result is incredible. And, when the heat doesn’t break, for weeks at a time, it can be a bit mind blowing.
People here find different ways to cope with the heat. Most people carry around a little towel, some Japanese people keep the towel around their neck, this towel has the sole purpose of being used to wipe sweat from their body. I have started to carry one around as well, out of necessity.
Among JETs, we have started to call this “No Touching” season. We have joked on many occasions with other couples about how there can simply be no touching during the summer here. It is too hot! Touching and snuggling will have to resume when the temperatures go down to a more reasonable level. Sometimes it is even too hot to hold hands when walking down the streets.
When we were hanging out with some couple friends, Angus and Ella, Ella reminded me of a scene from Everybody Loves Raymond that pretty much sums up our existence here in Japan.
Raymond and his wife (I can’t seem to remember her name at the moment) were lying in bed. Raymond, as he usually does, started to make some advances. He didn’t even get to the point where he was touching his wife before she started making this very clear, buzzer-like sound. The sound made it clear that he had no chance. Still, Raymond continued. He would, again, approach her, and as he got close, she would make the noise again. So, it went, for a few minutes with the noises getting closer and closer together. There was no touching in his house that night.
At Raymond’s house it was just one night of no touching, here it is a whole season. We will be quite happy when the cooler weather rolls in. We have been reassured that this fine country does, in fact, have four seasons. Fall has to come eventually!!