Mumbai is incandescent with heat. The Sun is shining down with 41 degrees Celsius ferocity, and there is a shimmer in the air, which makes one avert one’s gaze from the outside. How did we get to this from the cooler days just last week? Actually, from just two days ago, when the temperature was seven degrees cooler.
My son has his Term exams and the worst crime one can do is try to teach a child the functions of the cerebellum and the medulla, while his cerebrum is feeding him enticing images of ‘crushed ice mango milk shake’ and ‘tonnes of refreshing lemonade’ (as if lemonade can be anything but)! I don’t know how he is going to get through these exams. I swear I am going to go up in smoke before the week is up.
What can one do to tackle this heat?
One, do not go out. Okay, if you must, slather on sunscreen (and sweat like a pig), carry water (in steel or glass bottles, plastic could land you in trouble), carry some grapes or a banana, or even better, some buttermilk (that’s my South Indian for chhaas).
Two, do not go out. If you must, carry a cap and glares and gallons of water.
Three, do not go out. If you have no alternative, then step out post 6 pm. That way, the only thing you will have to deal with is the traffic. And the pollution.
Four, do not go out. If you absolutely have to, then fly away to cooler climes, or to a hill destination. Though, don’t choose Lonavala or Mahabaleshwar, they may be hotter than Mumbai. How does the top of the Everest sound to you?
And last, I exhort you again, do not go out. If you are left with no choice, then dive straight into the swimming pool or the sea. Again, post 6 pm. The sea and pool waters will be warm, not hot. And the chill that touches you when you emerge from the water, a la Ursula Andress, will be completely worth all the heat you had to endure during the day.
I love summers. For the mangoes, more mangoes, and the chilled drinks. As for the heat, didn’t I just tell you above how to beat it?