how to stay cool during a heat wave without air conditioning

vintage Toastmaster fan

  • blast a vintage metal fan (that comes in one speed: ON)*
  • wear a wet bandana (housemate)
  • sleep on the floor (cat)
  • wear only dresses (me)
  • eat one meal a day (but drink lots of water)
  • spill a glass of water on yourself—oops!
  • pull half a pair of curtains in sunny rooms (but leave windows open for fresh air)
  • spritz faces and bare body parts with a squirt bottle
  • run appliances like the washer/dryer and dishwasher after dark
  • hand-water the garden (briefly)
  • pin or tie long hair up off the neck
  • mist or shower houseplants, and give them extra drinks
  • exercise early in the morning (or late at night)
  • take tepid-to-cold showers
  • avoid the oven
  • make homemade strawberry-vanilla ice cream (housemate), sorbet, or something almost-vegan 
  • seek the shade
  • wash your feet
  • wear a wide-brimmed hat (me)
  • walk through neighborhood sprinklers
  • head for the river

the sun outside, reflected

vintage fan on antique chair

*See a new version of this old fan here.

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