It is easy to take certain things for granted and stop appreciating them. Sometimes we take people for granted and stop appreciating all the ways they enrich our lives. Perhaps we recognise they are special but just don’t realise the degree to which they help us. We may forget how wonderful our home is. It may only be when we have to manage without someone or something that we acknowledge how grateful we should be.
Today the temperature reached 41C and the forecast for tomorrow is only two degrees lower. I am really missing air conditioning because the split system which cools the house broke down a couple of days ago. Someone is coming to look at it Monday morning.
Usually our house is a pleasant temperature. The kitchen and lounge are cool in summer. The bedrooms are somewhat warmer as they are on the north side of the house. They also don’t get a direct flow of cool air but they aren’t bad.
Without the air conditioner our house resembles an oven. I have memories of years ago before air conditioning when this was common in summer. When I was a child we had a small fan in our bedroom on summer nights but it didn’t help much. Some summer nights we slept outside.
The car wasn’t air conditioned. Supermarkets and shops were hot. Public transport was not air conditioned. There were few places to escape the heat. Time at the swimming pool was bliss but the trip home wasn’t.
I have become accustomed to a cool house. What else do I take for granted?
When I was a child we did not have a hot water service. A bath was a once a week thing and the water was heated in a chip heater in the bathroom. The kettle was boiled to get hot water to do the dishes. Mum heated water in the copper in the laundry to wash the clothes. Now I turn the tap on and grumble as I wait for it to run hot.
There are so many forms of home entertainment nowadays. When I was a little girl the radio and a record player provided our entertainment. I recall the excitement I felt as an eight year old when our first television was delivered. It was black and white and there were three channels. When the programs were over for the day there was a test pattern until programs began again the next morning.
Over the years an increasing number of machines to entertain us have been invented. We take them for granted and complain when they are slow to perform.
Without air conditioning I am learning again to appreciate the cooler air of early morning. I am making a point of living in the moment and feeling gratitude for any cool breeze. I have been making an effort to get up early to do housework before the heat sets in. I have been conscious of opening the house up when it is cooler outside to let that cool air into the house. Then I close doors and windows to keep the heat out as the day progresses.
Sometimes we have to lose something to truly appreciate it. I am grateful in the knowledge that there will come a time when we will once again have air conditioning. I truly feel for people whose homes are not air conditioned.