by Regina Maguire Kirshbaum
I’m often asked by the Yankees I left behind up north,
“How can you stand the humidity down there?”
My favorite response is: “What humidity?”
I’d never admit it to my buddies, who are shopping for winter coats about now, but the humidity really does get to me by the end of the summer. I have a powerful method of beating the heat, though. I use my “lemonade and vodka out of lemons” mentality to spin the stifling humidity into something “potable.” Okay, you really can’t drink humidity, but I gobble up the warmth with the appetite of one born and raised with four seasons. Well, it’s really two in New York, sweat and shiver, but who’s counting?
Yup, summer time and the sweating is easy here in the Lowcountry. Step out of your house or car and you can almost hear Mother Nature laughing as she slaps her humid hand across your face. It’s the mother of all bad jokes. If you wear eyeglasses, as I do, the laughs just keep coming. Don’t you love the fog on your lenses? Don’t you enjoy groping your way down your porch steps? See what I mean? Not funny, Mother Nature!
Since I pride myself in taking that lemonade and vodka mood elevator, I’ve got myself convinced that the Lowcountry is the fountain of youth. What makes it so? Well, the humidity, of course! Yes, without a shred of scientific evidence, I can say with the utmost confidence that the coat of moisture we all take for granted from May through mid-September is the reason we all look so healthy. Maybe you’ve felt that lethargy in your step as you slog through air you can slice with a machete.
Well, it takes stamina to endure this dripping mess of air and, yes, that keeps us healthy. Perhaps you’ve been working in the garden and you stand up, staggering for the nearest hose. Well, bless that healthy glow as your cheeks burn from exertion as the sweat pores down your whatever. Aren’t you proud of your effort? You lost last night’s binge in a pool of water and don’t you feel the better for it? Even your dog helps you reap the benefits of humidity by refusing to walk further than your front porch, thus saving you from sun exposure. See, it’s all making sense now, isn’t it?
Please join me in raising a glass dripping with condensation, filled with lemonade and vodka (of course) to Lowcountry humidity. Let’s revel in the environment that keeps us complaining like a dog without a bone, sweating like an AC unit, and walking around deliriously happy. And what to say the next time those snarky friends ask you how you can stand a Lowcountry summer and all its awful humidity? Repeat after me: “What humidity?”!
Regina Maguire Kirshbaum fled Stamford, CT, last year and landed directly on HHI. Fulfilling a decades long dream to live here in “The Land of Make Believe” (as her mother calls it), Regina is smitten with Lowcountry life. Another Yankee, snagged, tagged, and loving our abundant way of life!