Great tips on how to stay cool in the heat
By Walter Bakker
AND there we lie, burning up, can’t think straight anymore, exhausted and barely able to lift a glass of water to our lips; let alone trudge to the fridge for some clinking ice cubes in a tall glass… not to mention getting some shut-eye in the extreme heat of many-a-summer night in the Klein Karoo.
How can one keep reasonably cool when not in an air-conditioned room? The room feels sticky, the sheets stick to one’s body and it all feels just plain awful.
However, there are ways to cool down a bedroom or one’s body without an air-conditioner.
Read and cool down…
• First suggestion: strip the satin, silk or polyester sheets from the bed and replace with light coloured light-weight cotton sheets. They are breathable and promote micro ventilation around the hopefully now-being-able-to-sleep per-son.
• Try the freezer burn technique: stick the top sheet in a plastic bag and pop in the freezer for a while, whip on the bed, slide under and enjoy the – albeit a somewhat short – respite… But hey, a few minutes can cool the body down quite effectively.
• Use that hot water bottle: Stick in the freezer to create a bed-friendly ice pack.
• Point the fan not at you but towards an open window. It pushes the hot air out! Switch the ceiling fan’s rotation to reverse (should your fan have that facility) – the hot air pushed upward and thus outward… sort of.
– Drape yourself with a wet towel, cloth or T-shirt (ah, the much fantasised wet T-shirt…) and in this case turn the fan toward you. Place a thick beach towel on the bed to avoid soaking the mattress.
– Many Oudtshoorniete swear a wet bottom sheet keeps them cool… would also need a dry towel underneath though.
– Going naked is not necessarily a good idea as the sweat stays on the body instead of being whisked away by the body. Best to wear a loose, soft cotton shirt and shorts.
– The ice blow is old fashioned but does work well. Place ice cubes or ice blocks in a shallow open bowl directly in front of a fan… and a cooling mist comes a’blowing.
– If seriously in need of rapid cooling place ice packs or cold compresses to pulse points in the neck, against wrists and ankles, in the groin area and behind the knees.
– Lastly, drink a glass of water before bed as the sweating can dehydrate one fast.
Be cool… and stay cool, and tell us your cool tales, your hot stories, your kampvuurverhale and those lifestyle anecdotes…we love sharing the laughter or the tut-tuts…