hot days

In between the days of rain there have been sunny beautiful too warm summer days this past week. One place to escape the heat is the local shopping mall that is quite empty during the mornings and offer plenty of space for our son to run. He has already figured the place out, knows his way to the escalator up, elevator down, another elevator up, and again another one down, before he starts his course over again. There is also a little playroom with staff that is run by the city of Fukuoka where we can go and play for a while. When he is tired we find a kids cart and go shopping for groceries before taking the bike back home.

The heat here is nothing like I am used to from Sweden, and it seems like many people that can, stay indoors on those very warm days. Most moms with kids come to the shopping mall by car so we see almost no one outside on our bike trips. There is a whole host of things though, meant to keep babies and children cool on hot days, such as cool-towels, rings that you put in the freezer and when it is time to go out you put it around the child’s neck to keep it cool, and similarly freezable cushions to put in the pram to keep the head and back cool and comfortable. Portable fans and vests and jackets with built-in fans have become very popular among adults, but I have yet to see air-conditioned prams. But I am sure that is just a matter of time.

When it is not too too hot, we take the bike to the sea and play at the water’s edge for a while. My son loves the sea, and he is never happier than when he gets to play in water. So when it is too hot to really be outside, with our without cooling aids, I fill up our little outdoor pool and our son gets to play in the shade on the veranda. He brings his bucket and truck and sits in his little pool wanting me to swim in it as well. Pappa bada, he says to me, obviously imagining I will fit as well. We live a bit elevated – in the forest as my wife likes to say – and the breeze on the veranda is quite soothing, so I cannot imagine a more perfect place to cool the body during hot days. Maybe next year we will get a slightly bigger pool so my feet can fit as well.

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