Sunday, April 10, 2011

Super-power number three!

Super-power number three (central heating)

Confused? Let me explain. Last September, after being nursed along for a few years, my old lounge-room gas-heater exploded in a most dramatic fashion. One moment it was humming along as per normal and then next it emitted a sound reminiscent of a flatulent elephant (or what I would imagine a flatulent elephant to sound like if I had the spare time and/or inclination to imagine such things), and orange flames spat out from the bars before settling down to a vicious glow from which curls of acrid smoke wisped up toward the ceiling. I have rarely seen my offspring move so fast, which makes me suspect that in case of a localised emergency - fire, flood, nuclear disaster - it will be each to their own.

The upshot of this was that we were heater-less for the beginning of spring, which can be quite chilly, especially in the evening. That ridiculous snugglie blanket-thing suddenly became a coveted piece of clothing, while dressing-gowns were in high demand and a black market began with the long-ignored water-bottles. In short everyone was freezing - except me. Where they all tottered around like michelin men with their layers of clothing, I made do with tracksuit and t-shirt, and where they huddled around the one borrowed column heater, I disdained it in favour of fresh air and cheery optimism. Because I had central heating. And if I did feel chilly at any time, all I had to do was wait a few moments and voila! Warm once more.

Yes, menopause could not have started at a better time. Hot flushes were my friend, not my enemy, giving me a freedom that had everyone viewing me as some sort of stoic superwoman. The hot flushes even eased off as summer warmed up, lulling me into a false sense of security for quite a while. But I may have done a silly thing - you see, last month I had ducted heating installed (incidentally when they removed the old heater we discovered it was original, in other words it was well over 50 years old. That's what I call value), which I suspect may have angered the menopause gods. The result has been a full-on rush of hot flushes accompanied by whingey offspring who keep nagging to have the new heating turned up. But I blame myself for this predicament; clearly I looked the gift-horse directly in the oral region and this is the result.

Nevertheless I am determined to remain positive and, as such, I shall continue to view hot flushes as a super-power. If it wasn't for the whole fitness thing, I could probably scale Mt Everest dressed in shorts and a t-shirt. Hypothermia? Fiddlesticks. In terms of energy, I reckon one middle-aged woman is probably equal to three solar panels (let alone wind power) and, should the electricity fail for any reason (which seems to be a regular occurrence), I shall be ideally placed to maintain both my internal and external body temperature. In fact, with the way things are at the moment, I could hire out my forehead as a heating conduit. A super-power, in the true sense of the word.

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