Global warming is here to stay — whether we believe in it or not! The summers are getting longer and hotter and every year we hear that it was the hottest summer on record and some how believe the next year will turn out to be better!
And then comes the summer in all its glory! In a city like Mumbai, it means getting drenched in your own sweat if you have to be out for more than 15 minutes! Some of us are lucky enough to have jobs which entail working in an air-conditioned office during the better part of the day thus escaping the worst of this heat.
This is the time when small gestures and actions can go a long way to bring respite to some people who have no option but to slog out in the heat — the security guards at our gate, the vendors who sell at signals and the street urchins who knock on your car window as you wait to be transported from the coolness of your home to the controlled temperature of your office or the mall!
- Buy lassi or buttermilk or fruit juice tetrapacks and keep in your car. As little as 6 a day will help too. At every signal, please hand it out to the vendor who knocks on your car window trying to sell a magazine or toy to you. Do not serve soft drinks as they end up de-hydrating the person instead of replenishing the water loss.
- Offer chilled water to your building liftman or watchman.
- Keep a bowl out on your balcony or window for birds to drink some water and escape this sweltering heat.
- Keep glucose powder or sherbet in your house/office for your staff to self-serve when they come in from the heat.
- Surprise your office watchman by buying him ice-cream post lunch and watch his face break into a smile.