As far as I am concerned, air conditioning when the temperatures are under 90 and the humidity is under actually-seeing-drops-of-water-in-the-air is absurd. With some open windows and a few well-placed fans, most houses are perfectly comfortable without blowing all that cold air around. This is not just an environmental stance. Long before I became environmentally concerned obsessed, I preferred a natural breeze to the throat-stiffening, headache-producing, odor-trapping refrigeration that comes with air conditioning.
Nowadays, I care even more, due to my quest to hand my kids a living planet. Why the hell would I turn on air conditioning when the ocean breezes seem to be doing the job just fine?
Unfortunately, my husband is a bit more of a fan of air conditioning. He would prefer to have it on all the time. Zachary and I like fresh air. So, we have made a compromise. Open windows when awake, air conditioning when asleep.
Except, it really isn’t much of a compromise. The boys have allergies, and I think their parents do, too, and we probably should be keeping those allergens out at night. More to the point, I am a little paranoid about leaving the kids’ windows open at night. Especially now, as their room is right at the front of the house and we live on one story. It would be way too easy for someone to slice a screen and lay hands on my little guys, who – frustrating though they are when awake – are very, very sweet while fast asleep. I could actually imagine someone wanting to make off with one of them if the only view he or she got was a sleeping child.
I have every faith in my ability to hear, should someone break a window. Having babies has made me a much lighter sleeper, and every time one of them coughs down the hall, I wake up. Sliced screens? Not so much.
So, we lock up tight at night and switch on the A/C. We probably would anyway, since J cannot sleep well without it, but really, I haven’t given much here. And, lately, what before seemed like caution now seems like the smallest of security measures. (This is the point where my mother-in-law might want to stop reading.)
You see, we have had a number of nighttime burglaries in the neighborhood. Some guy in a ski mask breaks into houses with open windows and elderly female residents. Nice. Although I am not elderly, I am not willing to take my chances that he remains satisfied with the geriatric population.
So, I have gotten my butt in gear and crossed the following items off my to-do list: appointment with security system, safety deposit box, sending the manuscript file to a friend in case the thief steals my computer and my backup, and air conditioning duct cleaning. Looks like our A/C is here to stay.