Yes It’s Hot, even in Rochester


Think cool! Rochester skyline on a wintry day

A few months ago, were we ever really complaining about the snow and cold?

A few months from now,  will we long to feel as hot as it will be today?  

When I visit friends and family “downstate” New York, I get a lot of jabs about living in Rochester.

“So, it’s June… has the snow melted yet?”

“You know what the two seasons are in Rochester? Winter and July 14.”

“Do you get snowed in all the time and how do you go grocery shopping to get food in the snow?”

But guess what, folks? We really do get summer in Rochester, and it’s just as hot as anywhere else, especially this year.

Today, if temperatures reach 100 or above, as forecasters are predicting, it will be the hottest recorded day on this day in Rochester since …..  1894

One of the many advantages of living in Rochester – less traffic, one of the nation’s most affordable housing prices, and great cultural resources – is our pleasant summer. Usually, after a brutally cold winter, our summers are pleasant and comfortable.

Since I moved to Rochester in 2000, we have had summers where the rain fell more than the sun shone.  Some summers, the temperatures barely climbed out of the 70’s. Some summers, we feared we would never get a summer.

Right now, I am glad that I did not sign up for a spot in my community garden, as this has been the driest summers in some time.  There, gardeners must haul water in cans to quench their crops. I’m content with my little garden that is watered with several yards of irrigation tubing. 

Instead of hauling buckets in the heat like a peasant woman, all that is required is connecting a hose and turning a spigot.

So far, I’m getting  plenty of tomatoes – though still green,

a few pumpkins

and some peppers.

Most summers, I complain about the limited hours of sun my garden receives. This year, it is getting just the right amount of heat to grow and the limited sun is preventing it from completely shriveling up and dying.

The only thing, or person, I’m worried about shriveling up or wilting in the heat is my son, who is on his first overnight at day camp. I slathered him up with sunscreen, slapped on his white, sun reflecting hat, packed his frozen metal water bottle, and will hope for the best.

“Mom, is this the hottest summer of my life?” The seven-year-old inquired at the breakfast table.

“Yes” I said, popping his Eggo waffles in the toaster.

“Will summers get hotter than this even?”

For that, I don’t have an answer.

So, besides sweltering day campers, what will most Rochesterians do? They will survive just as they do in the winter:

They’ll duck inside a mall, movie theatre, or museum, if not a chilly office

At camps, they will stay inside and play board games, do lots of arts & crafts. And only brave the heat for a dip in the pool.

But in Rochester, we’ll take the heat.  After all, the burn of summer’s swelter is better any day than the bite of winter’s wind chills.

As for me, I finished writing and filing my two newspaper articles for the week.  I’ll catch up on some summer reading and spend time with my oldest son, already packed up for summer camp. Then, I’ll settle down for a long summer’s nap.

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About stacylynngittleman

I have been a public relations professional and reporter -- and always thought I would live in the New York Metro area - before my husband took a job in Rochester, New York. Most in Metro New York can't find Rochester on a map,and neither could I before we moved. I am now a columnist and a freelance writer for Rochester's only daily newspaper, the Democrat & Chronicle. I also am passionate about gardening, fitness and most of all, Jewish education and Israel Advocacy. Here's my perspective on Western New York living - the good, the bad, and the snowy.

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