Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Life with Open Windows

Gosh, that sounds awfully pop-philosophical, doesn't it?  But no, today I'm going to expound on the joys of keeping the literal windows open.

Over the last week or so, the rainy and cool weather that predominated in April and the earlier part of May was finally replaced with lovely summer weather.

A note about said summer weather.  The warmest day we had got up to the mid-20s celsius, which is apparently about as warm as it gets here even in high summer.  Thank goodness for that.  The temperatures didn't seem that high (at home, we can generally get into the low to mid 30s celsius during hot streaks), and yet I would be hot and sticky after just the grocery store run.  The answer: much higher humidity!  Today the high was 23 and I found it much more comfortable.  Nice enough to wear the few items of summer clothing I have over here, but not so hot as to induce sensations akin to melting.

So, we have no air conditioner in our flat and most of the time wouldn't be able to make use of one.  What we do have for ventilation are windows in the bedroom and living room.  For the last week straight, if we've been in the house, at least one of these windows has been open and its been wonderful.  We keep commenting on how lovely the air smells.  The scents of spring flowers, rain, night-time, and sometimes smoke drift pleasantly into the house.  Also, you can hear the birds chirping away very happily (with occasional less melodious calls from crows and magpies).

Every morning, the nursery housed in the complex lets the kids out to run and play.  At our last place, we had a family with five children living above us, so we got pretty used to tuning out children running about and screaming.  Every now and then we cast amused glances at each other when someone is throwing a particularly loud tantrum.

Today, we had a pretty respectable thunderstorm and, with the windows open, heard every crack and rumble and reverberation of the thunder.  This was a great improvement over our basement suite back home; we were always rather insulated from the thunderstorms there, unfortunately.

Now, the other thing it is important to note about the windows in our flat is that they are without screens.  My first thought on discovering this was What about the bugs?  If you leave a door open in Saskatoon for any length of time, you're going to find yourself sharing your home with flies, mosquites, and moths and, perhaps, dragonflies, bees, and wasps.  Not a problem here: England apprently has no bugs.  (Though it does seem to have preponderence of long-legged spiders...)

To date, we've had a couple small moths, a few flies that dart in and then leave again, and about two mosquitoes.  No bees (thank goodness - I thoroughly dislike being trapped in confined spaces with stinging insects).  Also, no birds or squirrels have attempted to infiltrate our sanctum sanctorum.  (Phew!)

So, the open windows have been great so far.  Long may this state of affairs continue!

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