Keeping cool on a (penniless) budget

popsicles

This post was originally published a couple of years ago, but it’s all too relevant today. Hope the tips help…

It’s hot. I love it. But I could do without my sauna of an apartment. Maybe this is what my rent increase is paying for, a built-in summer sauna. I can just hear my delusive landlord pitching the benefits to me now: “maintain a constant dewy complexion, sweat away those extra pounds and enjoy a higher power bill due to electric fans!”

Ah yes, electric fan. It’s a love hate relationship, isn’t it? If your pay checks are as piddly as mine are, and the idea of using a precious hundred bucks of it on an air conditioner gives you the cold (refreshing) sweats, then you’ve probably got at least two fans in your stifling hot abode. But let’s face it, all they really do is blow around hot air and give the illusion of a cooler temperature which lasts for about 3 minutes, and only if you’re sprawled out on the floor with both fans on either side of you. So basically, the only thing to do is pack a bag, pack a lunch, and get the hell out of your apartment.

The last few days have seen me wandering around, trying to get my air conditioned fix where I can. My empty wallet and dollar-less pockets have forced me to come up with creative ways of keeping cool. Maybe they’re not all ideal, but hey, it’s 30 degrees and only the most innovative survive!

1. Head to the grocery store.

No, no, you don’t actually have to grocery shop, you just need to grab a cart and pretend like you are! It’s like loitering…but you can justify it by calling it pre-grocery shopping, or grocery window-shopping. Grocery stores are always superiorly air conditioned, and they’re big enough to conceal you for a little while. But when a staff member halts you in Aisle 3 to see if they can help you find something (since your cart looks suspiciously empty), whatever you do, don’t tell them you’re browsing. This will certainly lead to your removal.

2. Go for a walk beside a high rise apartment.

I can see the questioning looks on your faces now. Understandable. So the other day, I found myself walking beside a towering high rise apartment building. Suddenly, droplets of cool water where gently falling on my sun-scorched arms and shoulders. I looked up to see what bird was pissing on me and realized that, instead, it was droplets of scuzzy humidity dripping from those lucky tenant’s air conditioners. But did I keep walking, out of the line of dirty droplets? Oh hell no, I’ve no shame. If I can’t afford an air conditioner, I’m going to damn well utilize everyone else’s!

3. Put a towel in the freezer.

This is the only legit method on the list for keeping cool, and it’s not even my idea. One of my awesome friends showed it to me, so all the credit goes to him. All you need is a face towel and a freezer and you are good to go! Ahem. Take the towel. Place it in your freezer. Wait. Wait. Wait. Remove the towel and place it on your shoulders, or your legs, or your face, or wherever. Your body will instantly feel ten degrees cooler, as if ice-cold ocean waves are lapping against your ankles, or like the time you got super drunk on New Year’s Eve and found yourself semi-naked outside in the snow as part of the Polar Bear Dip.

Well, these suggestions may or may not prove helpful, but they saw me through this week’s inhumane temperatures and a stifling hot apartment. As for keeping yourself hydrated, may I suggest popsicles and brewed ice tea (or sangria, it looks and tastes like juice, no one will know the difference!)

Good luck!

Photos:  sangitagurung.com

 

3 comments

  • Personally I like going to the dep and walking into the beer fridge. You can only loiter in there so long, but it feels so good!

  • haha good idea! I used to love to loiter in Pharmaprix, cause it’s closer than the grocery store, buuut….now they know me too well, and I’m totally conspicuous. I got a “welcome back” the other day…oooo….

  • i went to the theatre the other day and movie hopped. i saw 3 movies for the price of 1, and it was a great way to avoid being outdoors for a solid 9 hours.
    or the library is free. yay books and knowledge!

Join the discussion

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *