Never say never... “The only aspect of travel that is interesting to others is disaster.”
This saga doesn't exactly qualify as disaster but it does qualify as pragmatism. It is not a travel tale extoling the beauty of the places we visited, the extraordinary things we saw, the restaurants we enjoyed or suggestions for other travelers; you can read any number of excellent guide books for that. This is a tale of realization; realization that the calendar is creeping and things have changed, at least for me.
We recently had occasion to be wandering around in Rome for a week. In August. I had expected it to be hot and humid (which is definitely NOT my thing!) so I tried to prepare myself with the proper clothing, shoes, accouterments and attitude. It didn't work. I just don't “do” temperatures hovering in the high 90s and humidity in the gazillions. I was miserable. I suspect my spouse was, too, because he had to put up with the whining. He bribed me (successfully) to keep me going with limitless promises of Gelato.
I had prudently purchased and packed three hats, all supposedly guaranteed to keep my head dry and cool. None of them did. I had also purchased a scarf filled with special crystals that you soak in water and then tie around your neck to keep your body temperature down. It did help and I re-soaked it every time we came to one of the many fountains of running water in Rome. But I was still miserable.
We spent a lot of time in churches; lingering long at every one we entered, and there are a lot of them in Rome. My husband loved the art and I loved the opportunity to sit down out of the sun. It became a point of fascination to me that no one else seemed to be bothered to the extent that I was; my spouse agreed that it was hot but claimed it wasn't that bad.
I started carefully observing the hordes of other tourists; they were perspiring but I was dripping. My clothes were sticking to me, my drooping hair was plastered to my face, my mascara was running and I kept mopping myself with a towel. The only people who appeared to be even remotely as uncomfortable looked as if they might be from Scandinavian countries. My heritage is Northern European; was there a correlation?