How do you spell relief? A - C

Temperatures in the DC area have been right at 100 degrees. Our house is air conditioned in three zones, served by units that were installed in 1968. This means I am one year older than the air conditioners...and knowing how I am beginning to feel my age, let's just say it's a miracle they worked at all.

I say 'worked' because two of the three gave up their ghost this week...right in the middle of the heat wave. One unit controls the front part of the house - the common areas. The other controls the bedrooms used by our family and the Amabiles. All this means we've been sweltering at night. Fans have only served to smother us with blowing, hot air, inciting dreams of Lawrance of Arabia. If I would have woken up with dirt in my mouth I would have thought for sure we were on the playa.

Yesterday we spent the afternoon with Doug & Gretchen Geverdt. For our Cinci posse, Doug is Rusty Geverdt's brother. He works for the census burea in the Department of Very Important Stuff (my designation, not his). We love hanging out with them. Doug is fun to talk with (we like strange topics...) and Gretchen is a lot like Martha Stewart except she's free to leave the house. Yesterday she served us grilled chicken salad that was so fresh the chickens had attended Amish worship services earlier that morning before laying their all on the altar.

As we talked about our predicament at our house, Gretchen said "Would you like to borrow an air conditioner?". The effect was somewhat like shouting from the window of the ark: "Floaties, anyone!?!?!?!". They had a spare in their basement. A spare air conditioner. Just sitting there....

The problem is that our windows are very narrow. I was deathly afraid that we'd get it home and it wouldn't fit. I was even threatening to mount it outside and build elaborate duct work into our bedroom. When I got it home, it slid in with an inch to spare on either side. We slept in cool comfort as The Coolerator hummed in the window.


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