The Day the Sun Won

Last week, during the second day of the crippling New York City heat wave that inspired this post I think the sun managed to singe my brain because I was getting a little bit loopy. Since I moved into my apartment just last September, I only had to suffer through a few weeks of the smelly New York summer before October came around, allowing me to open my windows and let the cool air flow in. Being a Florida girl, I knew very little about these things they call window units (I think that’s the technical term) and had never even seen one until I caught a Law and Order rerun that centered around a little girl who was crushed by a falling unit. So I didn’t have a very positive or clear image of window units, nor had I ever needed one until now.

I survived day one of the heat wave by alternating between my neighborhood coffee shop and my room, where I sat propped up in my bed with my tiny fan blowing directly at my face. I briefly wondered if my pose might be reminiscent of a supermodel’s but then the sweat started pouring defiantly down my face and my hair blew back and wound itself into one big rat’s nest. Thank god I’m not in a profession that requires any sort of attractiveness.

Day two I awoke at five that morning because even at that hour, my apartment was already baking in the 90 degree heat. My survival skills told me I had to take a cold shower and get somewhere that had air and a plethora of outlets to feed my computer.

sunny ny

Sometime after my third soy latte (Woody Harrelson convinced me to stop eating dairy, but that’s a story for another time) the rumbling air conditioner that had been keeping my little coffee shop cool and dry seemed to suddenly pause to consider the odds of fighting against this incredible weather, and just like that, it gave up. The brief sputtering that gave way to silence should’ve been my cue to relocate, but I continued on, happily puttering away on my computer, oblivious to the heat that was moving in. Three hours later, the caffeine wore off and I was hot and incredibly grumpy. I get kind of feisty when I’m in a bad mood (also when I’m drunk) so I decided I was going to stop hiding from the weather and embrace the beautiful sunshine: a sort of valint challenge to the sun.

I packed up my computer and headed over to Central Park. The four avenue walk seemed to take forever and my tank top was sticking to my back by the time I made it to Sheep’s Meadow, which was completely desolate compared to the last time I was there on Memorial Day. But the fact that this field, which was usually bustling with sun bathers, Frisbee throwers, and illegal beer vendors selling Milwaukee’s Best for $5 a can, was still and quiet, did not deter me. I pulled out my bottle of baby oil (again, I’m from Florida), took off my shirt (I had on a sports bra) and took a nap. It was almost four by the time I got to the park so I figured I couldn’t get in too much tanning trouble.

You might think this story ends with me getting a 2nd degree burn and hideous sports bra tan lines, but it doesn’t. My southern skin fared fine, it was the rest of me that didn’t do too well. I woke up two hours later and saw some creepy looking dude staring at me from under a tree. Time to go. The walk back was even worse and I actually had to do something I’ve only seen very obese people and tourists do and stop to rest on my way home.

Once I made it up my six flights of stairs I had cold water and my not so sexy spot in front of the fan. But my apartment was not much of an escape. I still didn’t have one of those deadly window units and every Upper East Side place that might deliver one to me was closed by now. I considered going to a movie for a two hour, $12 escape, but that didn’t solve the dilemma of how I was going to survive the night. I couldn’t get Chris Brown’s “No Air” out of my head and my skin was probably still soaking in all that heat from the park. It was time to call in reinforcements.  I got my man friend, Chris, on the phone and started reminding him how guilty he would feel if I died in my sleep when he had had the chance to come to my rescue. I could tell he was less than pleased with the prospect of coming into the city to bring and install an air conditioner when he had to be at work in New Rochelle at seven the next morning, but when I threatened to fake illness so I could spend the night at Sloane Hospital down the block I think he started to feel bad for me. And when there was a brief silence in our phone conversations and I told him it was because I might have passed out a little, he audibly sighed but was quickly on his way.

In a truly heroic move Chris drove 30 minutes to deliver and install my very own window unit, which can cool my little room in less than 60 seconds. And although I have only used it a couple times since, he can now say that he potentially saved my life, a statement which will be especially useful when he sees my father again, who likes Chris just about as much as any dad likes the man who dares to date his daughter. My dad likes to grill potential suitors on what they are doing with their lives, and at least Chris will have a good answer this time: saving my life. Now that I think about it, I was the one who actually did him a favor. So Chris, I’d say we’re even.

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4 Comments on “The Day the Sun Won”

  1. Natalie Says:

    I LOL-ed several times during this post. Man, am I scared for what will become of me when I head back in July. I mean, I’m from Florida, but I don’t think anything can prepare you for this.

    Great post, Katie!

  2. cocktailsandcocktales Says:

    lol i love your blog. it has inspired me to take siegel’s advice and make one of my own… this one will focus on a certain someone and “redemption is mine”.. i mean, if not that, what else would i write about?!

  3. chris Says:

    Ou can think we are even but if we really think about all the nice manfriend duties I have done in our semi anual sale relationship you would see that you are in debt to me.

  4. kristy Says:

    this post was so funny! I cant believe chris did that for you! SOO sweet (I would of been hung up on for sure if I tried that) I think you should prob write another blog detailing how to get a boy to be your saviour!


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