It should be no surprise to those who know me that I hate Japanese summers. It is indescribably humid and hot and miserable. And I've been to hot and humid places! I've been to Florida, Mexico, Hawaii... but none of these compare to the misery of Japan. So much of the problem isn't in the actual weather but in the Japanese lifestyle which dictates no air conditioning, no driving, walking or bike riding everywhere and a "just deal with it" attitude. I recently had to change my keitai email, a very grave task, so I sat down to seriously think it over. Yet all I could think about was how terribly hot it was and how a bead of sweat was dripping rather uncomfortably down my back and my bangs were plastered to my forehead and my hair probably resembled a shaggy sweaty lion's. This in turn reminded me of a witty thing I'd read not too long ago in one of Jane Austen's letters to her sister Cassandra. She had been writing of her plans to go into town to see their brother Frank off on his next naval tour of duty and the difficulties which were hindering her. In the midst of this recount she suddenly breaks off and writes:
What dreadful hot weather we have! It keeps one in a continual state of inelegance. -September 18, 1796 (Full text)Clearly, in writing a letter to her sister the heat and humidity were all Jane could think of too! It perfectly sums up how I feel all summer in Japan; as if I were in a continual state of inelegance. It is seriously impossible to be elegant in this heat, unless of course you're a Japanese woman whose hair never frizzes and you don't sweat a drop. (I don't know how they do it!)
In Michigan, summer was my favorite season so it is quite disappointing to be missing my favorite season and having it replaced with misery. There are oh, so many things I've missed...
Lake Michigan beaches
Grilling and barbecuing
Crazy cheap and delicious corn on the cob
The Fourth of July
Ice cream cake for my birthday
Central air on full blast everywhere
Summer clearance sales
Driving with the windows down
Fast food drive-thrus
Luckily, fall is just around the corner. And while I despised fall in Michigan, it's probably my favorite season in Japan! So, I guess I just have to take the good with the bad and make a list of things I love about Japanese autumns to make up for dissing Japanese summers.
Oh, and my new keitai email? acontinual2state4of7inelegance at ezweb dot ne dot jp ... if you want to get in touch :)