The other day we were having dinner on the porch, already dressed in our long sleeves when we noticed that it was getting cold. I stood up to go to the bedroom and get a jumper when Frank said, Could you get me my fleece, as well? And the socks?… and -he added a bit later in a lower tone- may be the wool hat?
It was 23 degrees.
There is something funny happening to your body when you live in the tropics. In the first weeks, you can hardly breathe or move. When we arrived in Costa Rica in January, from the European winter, the thermal shock to our bodies was too much.
Even in San José, which is cooler than the coastal regions’ tropical lowlands, it was hot and humid. I recall how hard it was to walk from the apartment that we had in Alajuela to the supermarket that was 200 meters away. Not to talk about the walk that we did to the Farmer’s market.
When we went to Guanacaste in February, we already noticed the difference between San José / Alajuela and the coast. At least it was “dry” heat, which is easier to cope with. Yet, we had to put the fan for a couple of days to sleep.
Then we moved to Osa in March, which is the hottest month there, and we adapted to the scorching and humid conditions of the southern pacific. Basically, the freshness of a cold shower lasted until one got dressed again.
This last adaptation period lasted two weeks at most. And then we both got wholly tuned to the weather. Since then, 35-40 degrees and 100% humidity has become our new regular. We do not sweat (unless we are doing hard physical work), and consequently, we do not feel the need to drink water all the time.
And I say “we” because Frank, being from the “north of Europe” (as we, Spaniards think about Dutch people), copes remarkably well with the heat. Not surprising since he repeatedly reports enjoying the summers in Spain. And mind me, in Gredos, it could be easily 45 degrees in the sun. It is his Indonesian ancestry, he would argue.
So, our body has adapted so well to the 35-40 degrees…that the 25 degrees at night feel, well, COLD! So cold that we sleep with a blanket AND our sleeping bag every night. And I have checked again and again, and it seems that the temperature does NOT go below 25 degrees.
Needless to say that I cannot even imagine what it will be like to go back to zero degrees in January (or less). If we need a fleece with 25 degrees, I will need a spacesuit with a heating system to function in Lund. Brrrrrrr