After negotiation and numerous phone calls, we found someone who was prepared to give him a lift. All was well until yesterday when there were two rounds, one in the morning and one in the late afternoon. I suspect Phil may be allergic to mornings. Anyway, he opted to take what they call a bye for Sunday morning. In other words, he would not play but he would get half a point. His lift-giver was also taking a bye, but for the evening game, so that he could have Sunday lunch with his family and visit his ageing mother.
Fortunately we found someone else prepared to bring Phil back from Mondariz, provided he could get himself there. Hence the bus from Vigo bus station. In the meantime, the heatwave has finally hit Vigo over the last few days. There was little point in my going to Mondariz as it would be even hotter there than in Vigo and there is precious little to do if it is too hot to stroll.
So after the bus had left I spent a good hour in a cafe opposite the bus station sipping an iced coffee and mentally preparing for a hot walk back. I left the cafe eventually equipped with a bottle of cold water, just in case. I ended up donating the water, and some spare change, to a beggar sitting on the street; he looked so hot and dejected. He then perked up considerably, asked my name, told me his name was Joe and that he had a nice little house round the corner. Why did I not go there with him right there and then? This is probably the first time I have been propositioned by a street beggar!
Leaving Joe, dejected once more, still sitting on the street, I went on my way. A chemist's sign at the top of Calle Aragön, told me the temperature was 33 degrees, and that was in the shade! Later in the day, about 8.30 in the evening, as I walked out to meet the returning chess player and have a beer, the same sign said 30 degrees. The heat was bouncing off the walls. Even at 11.00pm, the wall at the front of our flat was still warm to the touch.
This morning, after a sticky night. the heat still hit you as you left the building. Usually when I run in the morning it is relatively cool and fresh. This morning the air was heavy. The temperature gauge down at the roundabout registered 26 degrees at 8.45 am! So it goes.
Yesterday I came across this stuff about sunburn. It's quite amazing what they say affects your tanning/burning. Among the things that struck me were the following:-
- Eating late at night - something we all tend to do more frequently when we are on holiday. If you change your eating habits it messes up your skin's biological clock - who knew your skin has a separate biological clock? - and can leave it less able to repair sun damage.
- Exfoliating, a practice I have never really appreciated or carried out.t stands to reason that if you remove a layer of the skin's outer surface, the underneath stuff will be more sensitive, less protected and more likely to burn. Who exfoliates, if you must do it, on holiday anyway?
- Eating celery! Yes! That's right! Eating celery! It all gets a bit scientific and technical here. Apparently celery contains furanocoumarins, whatever they are, which cause the skin to be more photosensitive and thus can lead to more intense sunburn. They don't say how much celery you would need to eat. And they also warn you off parsley and parsnips, again with no hint on what is a a safe amount to eat! They do, however, recommend tomatoes, watermelon, red peppers and carrots. These all contain carotenoids, the things that help you see in the dark and, incidentally protect the skin from harmful UV rays. Mind you I read years and years ago that eating to many carrots, probably a diet almost entirely made up carrots, can turn your skin orange. Now, does that explain President Trump?
- Anti-ageing creams come in for some stick as well. Slap on some anti-wrinkle cream and it counteracts the sunscreen! Where does that leave Boots Number Seven "Protect and Perfect" range? That range includes a facial sunscreen, factor 50, which seems to work. It does make you face look astonishingly white when you first apply it but that's a different matter.
My advice: Wear a big hat! Expose your skin circumspectly! Always have a cover-up garment! Walk in the shade! But do enjoy yourself in the sun as well!