When you HAVE TO (not want to or choose to. HAVE TO) shower at least twice a day, you know it's summa'time in DC.
You know what I'm talking about.
I mean the time of year that makes you want to rip your clothes off the second you get home and never let your necklaces touch your skin (tooo... HOT...). The time of year where you can't breathe because it's so humid, and dangitt, all you want to do at night is sleep in yo' skivvs!
That blessed time is now upon us.
I remember my first summer here in DC (You know. Back when I actually lived IN DC. Sad face.). There I was, livin' the life in a historic row house apartment from the 1800's (read: OLD), sharing this little one-bedroom space with another girl. Our kitchen was so tiny, I don't think we both fit in there at once. At least the living room was HUGE (or maybe it just appeared HUGE because we had no furniture). It was June, and summer was upon us!
I remember being excited about being able to walk to work. I could WALK TO WORK! What a concept! That meant I was saving LOADS on metro fare! I love it when I save $$! It also meant that I could wake up at 8:30am, roll out of bed, and easily be to work by 9am. AND did I mention I lived in Dupont Circle? Not actually IN the circle, duh. But close! We were two blocks away from the Dupont metro station, and it. was. GLORIOUS! (or so I thought.) I had visions of all the DC-type activities I would engage in during my leisure time (the bookstores, the farmer's markets, the free events on the Mall, the runs through all the DC neighborhoods, the Drum Circle on Sundays... Oh, DC in the summer is such a wonderful place!)
And then, the fact that SUMMER WAS UPON US became horribly, horribly real to me.
My walk to work was 10 minutes-- TOPS. But those 10 minutes every day (20 really, because I had to walk home, too.) were the most miserable 10 minutes I had ever experienced in DC (Note: I may be exaggerating. But don't you just feel so sorry for me now?). Who knew my body could produce that much sweat in 10 minutes? Who knew how quickly my hours of blow drying, straightening, curling, and brushing could become... pointless? Who knew that 10 minutes was a long enough period of time for a girl to die of thirst (because it's so hot), wither like a reed (also because it's so hot), and be brought back to life (because in addition to being so hot, it was also SO humid, so the withering like a reed didn't last very long...) and have frizzy hair to boot??! I'll tell you I sure didn't.
That's when I started showering at least twice a day. More if I went running. I showered in the morning before work. And I showered THE SECOND I got home from work. I showered here. I showered there. I showered everywhere. (But really just in my bathroom.)
Last summer was better. And now that the Time-of-Year-When-You-Have-to-Shower-at-LEAST-Twice-a-Day is upon us once more, here's how I survive.
My Summa'time Tips for Success and Melting Prevention
- to stay indoors as much as possible (AC, people! All y'all who eat lunch outside are nuts!),
- to always, ALWAYS carry a water bottle with me (ALWAYS!),
- if it's disposable, to not throw away said water bottle when I'm finished, because I'd better just refill it and put it back in my bag,
- to carry a mini water bottle when I go running after 8am, even if it's a short run. (This would NEVER happen in my beautiful mountain desert!)
- to always keep a comb/brush and bobby pins in my bag, a hair clip on my backpack, and a hair elastic on my wrist,
- that sandals are preferable but when closed-toe shoes are required, sock liners are a MUST,
- to never again buy summer clothing that involves wearing more than one layer,
- that when an undershirt is required, THESE little beauties are my saviors! (Thanks for the discovery, C-lin!)
- to buy the fancy deodorant that supposedly keeps you from sweating? (Even though it's more expensive. It's definitely worth it!)
- to wear as little makeup as possible. It's going to melt off anyway. (Tinted moisturizer, how do I love thee?!)
- that receipts from the store, toilet seat covers, and sometimes napkins can double in a pinch for those fancy oil-blotting sheets they sell you at drug stores and department stores,
- that braids are my hair's summa'time best friend. Braids in my bangs, braids across my forehead, braids to the side, braids, braids, BRAIDS!
- that if it's not a curly hair day, I should at least CURL my hair, because it sure ain't gonna stay straight. (That one, I actually learned on my mission. Don't fight the humidity. Let your hair work WITH it!) The humidity makes it curl more, and you'll look like you did it on purpose.
- to never underestimate the wisdom of keeping a travel-sized deodorant in your desk drawer and hand sanitizer in your purse (use as deodorant in case of unexpected emergencies! And in not-emergencies, bonus: clean hands!).
The irony of this summer is that I'm in school, and for some reason, the classrooms at GW are FREEZING! So now, in addition to abiding by my Summa'time Tips for Success and Melting Prevention, I now have to bring a cardigan to class with me. Go figure.