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June 2022 July 2022

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Wednesday 20th July 2022
 08:48 BST
  Maybe yesterday was the hottest day of the year. It was hotter than the previous day. Strong sunshine until about 6pm raised the temperature to about 38° C. From 6pm it clouded over, and I think it was around 8pm when we had a very light shower. It maybe lasted a full minute, and in that time about a dozen drops of rain hit my bedroom window. Ten minutes later those raindrops evaporated in the heat. It cooled off during the evening, and by midnight the outside temperature fell to about 25° C. Meanwhile, in my bedroom, the temperature was around 34° C !
                              with rain expected later this afternoon
  This morning it almost felt chilly when I went into the garden to feed the birds. On any other day 19° C would feel quite warm. This morning may see some sunshine or sunny spells, and maybe the temperature may reach 26° C for a lot of the afternoon. From mid afternoon things get a bit uncertain. There are patches of rain floating across the sky, but it seems it is impossible for the forecasters to predict where they are going. The Met Office are confident of rain from 6pm followed by 2 hours of thunderstorms (according to the latest revision). The BBC, who originally said no rain, have now predicted a similar sequence to the Met Office, but starting as early as 4pm. A heavy fall of rain would be very good for my garden. There may be no sunshine at all tomorrow. Half the hours will be lightly overcast, and the other half will be heavily overcast, but I doubt we know which hours will be which. The temperature could be as low as 24° C or as high as 25° C.
a walk in the hot sun

  I guess you could call it inspired madness, or anything you fancy, but at just after 10am, a lot earlier than usual, I went out for a moderately lone walk in the blazing sunshine. I almost walked 3.5 miles, and 3.429 miles was not far short of that. Even at that time of the morning it was very hot going. I hoped I might be able to push it a bit further, but as I approached what would be the halfway point (the far end of the Linear Park) I was starting to feel tired.

  I did take water with me, and stopped for a minute or so to have a drink every now and then. It was not that frequent, and at the end I had only drunk half of a 500ml bottle of water. It started out chilled, but it wasn't long before it was warm.
 If the video plays on your web browser you see me looking rather warm, and explaining my madness, but also what a nice day it was. What I didn't say was that even at the hottest, which was probably only 34° C, rather than my predicted 35° C, it did feel very nice when under the shade of a big tree - much nicer than in my hot and stuffy bedroom.
  I had intended to take a lot of pictures, and I did take a few, but most of what I would have liked to photograph would just not stay still long enough ! Along the river bank I saw thick swarms of all sorts of different flies, and loads of butterflies or moths in assorted colours and sizes. There were also many dragonflies/mayflies close to the river. None would settle so I could photograph them. If I had one of my big DSLR cameras, instead of my Nikon P500 "bridge camera" I might have got an occasional usable snap if I set the exposure time to a 1/1000th second, to freeze most motion, and preset the focus to about where I hoped the subject would be.

  I was feeling quite uncomfortable as I walked the last quarter of the walk. The good thing was that after forgetting to take any painkillers I didn't seem to have any significant discomfort from what I would normally take painkillers for when out walking - i.e. my knees, and also my chest. The latter being scar tissue, and possibly what I call twisted rib pain, all as a legacy of my quad heart bypass operation. What tends to be less of a problem these day, my feet, were really sore as I approached home.

  I called into the Sainsbury's local shop (by Catford Station) on my way home, and bought three "Italian style" ready made salads. I rather like them, although I think the sugar content of the balsamic dressing is rather high, and the very sweet mini plum tomatoes are a rich source of sugar. For that reason I only ate one of them, and I will probably only eat the other two on day at a time.

  I didn't really feel inclined to do anything for the rest of the day after that walk. One thing I did do was to have a long siesta in the afternoon. I was quite surprised that I managed to get comfortable for it. My bed felt hot to the touch before I was even laying on it, but I still managed to fall asleep, and I may have slept for as long as an hour. After waking up I had
49.2° C in the sun !  an idea. Partly hidden underneath all my camera cases, after it fell off the table,  was the display of a thermometer with a sensor on a long bit of thin wire. The sensor was dangling just outside my bedroom window. Once I had found the display I was able to see the temperature when in direct sunshine. It was a toasty 49.2°C !!!

  For most of the afternoon I had the windows closed because it was hotter outside than it was inside. It made it feel stuffy, but it did keep the internal temperature down to a very slightly more manageable 34° C - which was still bloody hot ! From about 5 or 6pm the outside temperature began to drop. It seems crazy to think that I thought it was wonderful when it had dropped to just 30° C. By then the sun was no longer shining at the windows, and I opened both the curtains and the window. By midnight it was almost cool outside, but it was still 33° C in my bedroom for most of the night.

  I almost felt too hot to eat, but only almost.... At 7pm I made myself a dinner of ham and cheese on a thick bed of lettuce. I assumed it was sort of healthy except for the mayonnaise. I was tempted to open a beer, or pour a large Scotch after my dinner, but I knew that was not a good idea on such a hot night. I watched an old episode of QI, and at 10pm I went to bed. Maybe it was the long afternoon sleep, but I didn't seem to feel sleepy. That was evidently an illusion because after what seemed like ages I fell asleep, and didn't realise it until I woke up again and saw that 3 hours had passed. I don't think I can remember anything about last night. I do know I woke up for a pee once or twice, maybe three times, but it all feels like it might have been a hazy dream now.

  One of the first things I did when I got up was to get a 2 litre bottle of water from the fridge. It was only chilled tap water in a rinsed out Diet Coke bottle, but while the water is chilled it doesn't taste bad. I fed the birds, and then read some stuff on the internet while I tried to drink a pint and a half of water. About an hour later I checked my blood glucose. It was once again rather high. At least 9.8mmol/l is below the red line, but it is not right. I am wondering how the hot weather is affecting my readings. I think I have ruled out dehydration now, and that leaves either the hot weather, or that my pancreas is now failing.

  I will continue to battle these high blood glucose reading with diet because it is having some beneficial effects. Yesterday, after getting back from my walk I jumped on the scales and got the lowest reading I have seen in ages. Of course it was mostly dehydration - rather a lot of it. The reading after I got home was 1.8kg less than before I started walking. That is just a bit less than a 2 litre bottle of drink (about 2kg).

  Hopefully today will be a good day. It has started off good because it was almost cool this morning. Maybe it will end quite good if it does rain enough to revive my wilting garden, and brown grass. In between times I hope I'll be having a lunchtime drink with Angela. I think the walk through the park is going to be a cooler affair than my walk yesterday !
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