I was speaking to a neighbor early this morning as she was taking out her trash and we were remarking about the July heat. This neighbor is much older and wiser then I am, at approximately 80 years old. We spoke of the times of the past, before air conditioning, before large fan cooling systems and how her grandparents generation dealt with the heat.
She talked about ice house’s, small refrigerators (which was a new concept), shady groves of trees and local water spots to cool off. She remarked that on hot days, the neighbors would be outside waiting for the river breezes and thunder storms to cool things down.
I spoke about how as a child we would go swimming everyday in the lake my grandparents live on in Delran NJ and nights with wet sheets over our bodies in front of a fan, we laughed when I said my favorite thing to do was “sing into the fan, and how it made my voice sound”. We chatted about crickets singing in the heat of the summer night and hearing thunderstorms running up the river- as a sign things were going to cool off.
She told me a story of her grandmother making mint tea in a big pot on the stove in the early morning hours and everyone having to drink it, in the heat of the afternoon. As an herbalist, I knew the old ways are the best ways!
Yes, please make some mint tea today, it will naturally cool down your body. As we both talked about today being 95 degrees or more, she said it was time for her to return to her “refrigerated box of a house”! I think this afternoon I’ll make a container of mint tea, chill it down and drop some off to her!
Happy July Day