When the locals find it hot…
…then it’s probably really hot.
I moved to Jakarta last month. 11 July, 2012. Before I moved here, everyone I knew who had been to Indonesia told me to prepare to be overwhelmed by the heat. You see, I’m from Canada. The Great White North. I had lived my entire life above the 49th parallel. I had endured 40 degree summers (Celsius – we’re metric up there) and minus 40 winters. I had lived for twenty four years in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia, which is temperate and rainy…like, all the time.
What most people don’t know until they get to Canada, however, is that we love to talk about the weather. When the locals find it hot in Canada, they talk about how hot it is. They update Facebook statuses commenting on the weather. They discuss it at Tim Horton’s (donut shop). They Skype/Facetime/Google+Hangout and discuss how the weather is.
In Jakarta, however, no one discusses the weather. There’s no point. In the last seven weeks, the variation in temperature has been within a few degrees. It’s hot. We’re very near the equator. It has rained for one hour in the past seven weeks. Yes, you read that correctly. One HOUR. Not a day. Not a week of drizzle. One hour.
But, what I’ve noticed is that no one here complains about how hot it is unless they’re from Canada. I wear shorts daily. Our security guards at our apartment building wear full, long-sleeved, long pants, paramilitary boots uniforms on a daily basis and they never sweat. Me? I look outside and sweat. I live in the pool. I keep hoping that I’ll wake up one day and it will be 18 degrees.
Yesterday seemed hotter than usual, and I snapped this photo of a guy who was cooking chicken in oil in a street-food cart on asphalt. Even he seemed to think it was hot.