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A Bit of Burgos by Dale Burgos     

Beat the heat

As the title of my article would suggest, one would automatically think of the hot summer days we’ve been able to enjoy lately (and the many more to come, according to Environment Canada). The title has a couple different meanings.

First, the Miami Heat are this year’s NBA Champions. Nice to see the likes of LeBron James taking home the trophy, however as the title would suggest, I was rooting for the other guys. Before this year, the Oklahoma City Thunder basketball team was barely on my radar. Had I put money down on who would be in the finals, this team would surely not be on my list. Where is Oklahoma City anyways? Are they close to Michigan? Geography was apparently not one of my strong suits in school. However, I do remember getting an Ain the class. As it turns out, Oklahoma is planted north of Texas, west of Arkansas and south of Kansas. Also an interesting fact, the state of Oklahoma looks like one of those giant foam hands with only the index finger extending out. Perhaps it wasn’t just by accident that the team made it to the big game in the sport of basketball if they are bold enough to shape the state as if to tell the world “We’re number one!”

My chanting of “Beat the Heat” didn’t work, and in game five they lost.

The second meaning is for obvious reasons. If you like the sun and enjoy the heat, then this weather is for you. Earlier this year, we had some record temperatures in March and now it’s shaping up to be a super summer. My wife and I recently took a trip south to Phoenix, Arizona. It was the beginning of their hot season. At the time, the temperature here at home was in the low teens, so a trip to the desert was just what I needed at the time. The temperature in Phoenix soared to high 30s every day. It didn’t seem so bad since it was a dry heat. So how did we beat the heat there? We spent a good amount of time in the pool and really enjoyed the air conditioning in the car and hotel. The weather seemed a bit overboard, but all the locals seem to manage just fine. I have two tips for those thinking of travelling to Arizona during their hot season: 1. Drink lots of water and; 2. Don’t ever walk on asphalt with bare feet. Ouch.

I’m sure we’ll have our fair share of 30-degree temperatures soon. Add the humidity to that and we’ll need to find some ways to cool off. Here are some tips I’ve come up with when you don’t have a car or home to cool off in.

The pamaypay

You’ve all got one. The fancy ones made of bamboo, or even the little metal frame ones that spring out like an accordion. Ask any Filipino carrying a purse; you know there is one hiding in there. Don’t have one? Any piece of paper or flyer will do. Heck, I’ve even seen some poeple using their sandals. You do what you gotta do to cool off.

The mall

There’s air conditioning, food, clothes and bathrooms. That’s all you really need, right?

A harem of servants

This one is purely a dream, but why can’t I have group of people cooling me off with giant leaves, whilst feeding me grapes and spritzing me with cool mineral water? I’ll keep dreaming.

Act like a dog

So your car doesn’t have air conditioning? No problem! When driving down Portage Avenue, open up all your windows and stick your head out as far as you can. It looks silly, but it will definitely cool you off. Side note: Don’t open your mouth, the bugs will find you.

Take a dip

Go to the beach, visit the pool in your community or get one of your own. A few years ago when the Burgos boys were little, we bought a Mr. Turtle pool. Came with a slide and everything! We quickly outgrew that and got an inflatable one. It didn’t take long for me to realize that my lungs did not have the capacity or patience to blow that up every year. This year, Elizabeth twisted my arm and we invested in a behemoth 18-foot hard-sided pool. Finally something the whole family can enjoy to beat the heat.

Dale manages the communications department for a Winnipeg school division.

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