Thursday, July 30, 2009

You just can't find a decent Frigidarium during a heat wave these days.....




























In my post on Wednesday that featured different paintings of the discovery of Moses by the Pharaoh's daughter, I noted that my favorite among them (and Darlene commented hers also) was one painted by Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema. Not being familiar in the slightest with this artist I began looking at his work and I love most of what I saw.

This piece, The Baths of Caracalla, painted in 1899, no doubt rose to the top on my list of favorites due to Wednesday's high temperature of 107 degrees F. (The thermometer at the peak of our rooftop that monitors the inside atomic clock registered 115.3 F. at 4:00PM.) Tomorrow's forecast is for temps around 100 and then we are expected to drop down into the 90s with possible thunderstorms next week. Just not good news at all for our tinder-dry forests and grasslands.

Not to be misunderstood, the thought of soaking in a hot bath right now sounds like hellish torture. But that's not all that was offered at the Baths of the Roman Emperor Caracalla. NOVA Online offers an interesting "virtual stroll around one of the most magnificent baths ever built: The Baths of Caracalla." It is no wonder that my favorite spot at the baths, if my virtual tour could come to life during this heat wave, would be the Frigidarium.

Best I can do is take a cool shower which I'm sure to enjoy more than this little guy.....


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24 comments:

Mariana Soffer said...

Very funny the poor little guy who is probabbly going to get wet against his will. Unlike the other people on the painting who enojoyed taken those baths, they did it like a ritual thing.

bookmanie said...

Hello Lydia, I hope the water is hot! I forgot to give you an important tip. Contrary to popular belief répendues, take baths or showers, hot summer. This in effect, to relax the pores of the skin (heat from the body and toxins). A cold shower, will have the effect of contracting the pores of the skin, and thus retain the heat. After a cold shower in summer, you sweat more and it was much warmer. I was a marathon runner until recently, and I studied, among other things, the physiology of the human body, you can trust me. Bookmanie

bookmanie said...

IMPORTANT: Of course, this advice does not apply if you have a fever. Bookmanie.

cathwrynn said...

Frigadarium.

now there's a word one doesn't hear anymore.

I know this because even spell checker doesn't think its a real world. And spell checker knows!

Chuck Dilmore said...

incredible painting!
(and hilarious photograph!)

francessa said...

I'd love to join you in the Frigidarium - it's hot here, too!

Lovely picture! Our cats here like water treading in the basin.

Cool greetings :-)!

M Riyadh Sharif said...

The little guy looks frightened!
Btw, Temperature is pretty high at your place! How many days this heat wave will continue?

Kim said...

Frigidarium is a great word.

And that cat picture is one of my all time favorites. That poor kitty.

Mark said...

I love the thought of the baths! Looks like a very interesting place. I used to live outside of Bath, England and visited the roman baths many times.

Looking to the Stars said...

Lydia, loved the post! Pics are great, little kitty is soooo cute. Loved the advice form bookmanie. Sorry about the heat wave, we are having a very wet and cool July. I think we have your weather. Take care

Owen said...

I think that may be the most expressive expression on the face of a cat that I've ever seen... oh how a picture is worth a thousand heart rendingly sad meows here... and how embarrassed they usually are after the bath is over and they look about half their normal size... and know it.

The painting and the story about the baths is good too, I think I would have been ok with being a Roman...

Darlene said...

it's hot here, too. 103 was today's temp with 105 predicted for Sunday. I just stay inside and drink lots of fluids.

I love all things connected to ancient Rome and Greece. Their architecture was so wonderful. I visited the ruins of the Roman baths in Ephesus and the toilets produced lots of sly glances from those on the tour.

Thanks for the Nova web site. I started checking it out and will finish tomorrow. Fascinating.

Wayfaring Wanderer said...

He just looks plum miserable! Poor guy :(

I hope you can find some relief!

Hattie said...

Unbelievable temperatures for Portland. The hottest I ever experienced it there was 105 one
4th of July.
My kids and grandkids were out at the Beach, where it was in the 70's. And my other kid and grandkid were in New Mexico, where it was hot but at some altitude. Smart of them.
That poor little kitten!

Lydia said...

@Mariana- What a pretty name! I realize that some cats have taken to water, but it sure is rare and this kitty is certainly not one of them.

@bookmanie- That makes sense to me because I am aware that spicy foods are best to eat in hot weather...for the same reasons. But the cold water feels better! That's impressive that you have been a marathon runner. I hope you didn't stop due to injury.

@cathwrynn- How 'bout that spellchecker! I had never heard the word before yesterday. :)

@Chuck- I agree on both counts.


@Francessa- I suppose we could brave the regular spa waters prior to the cold plunge (per bookmanie's advice). Now you absolutely must post a picture of your cats treading water in the basin. I've gotta see this!

@Riyadh- The temps are dropping into the mid-90s on Friday, and maybe the 80s next week. Hurray!
Kitty looks terrified . . .

@Kim- The word does have a certain solid class to it.
You seem to know this photo; I just discovered it and now it's one of my alltime favorites too.<

@Mark- Seriously? Roman baths in Bath, England? Is that the source of the town's name? You have made me curious and I'll check this out!

@Looking to the Stars- It's a strange switch-up for you to have our weather (New York City has it, too). Please send it back to us!

@Owen- Isn't that kitty photo the greatest? I want to save him!
I'd have done alright as a Roman in those times too, except for the bathroom set-up. Did you happen to see that on the virtual tour of the baths?

@Darlene- You are such an interesting person! You often surprise me by saying you have visited places I show in postcards, or mention in posts. It's great having your comments. Did you notice that you can view the entire program there at the NOVA website? I'm scheduling that for this weekend.

@Wayfaring Wanderer- Well, they say it's slowly on the way. You must be cool up there in the mountains, lucky you.

cathwrynn said...

Lydia, i have just spent a good half hour catching up some reading on a friend's blog. I think you would love it... intelligent, soulful, real.

http://meanwhilethisworld.blogspot.com

please check it out...

Melinda said...

I knew I could leave it up to you to introduce me to a new word (Frigidarium). LOL.

It's been burning here too, Lydia! Luckily, we have a swimming pool--and I have been taking full advantage of it (I am so lucky).

I also agree with the other commentor who said that it is actually better to take a hot bath in the summer--as far as keeping you cool longer when you leave (but I am still going to jump in our cool pool!). There's truth to what she/he said!

That little kitty doesn't look like he's a happy camper--at all (but lol).

Take care--and stay cool, Lydia!

Melinda

bookmanie said...

I knew you knew the reason for my arrest. Yes it is an injury, but a rare injury. Two tendonitis to both Achilles heel. Two sports doctors told me that was very rare, even impossible. They proposed a cause: a lack of hydration. Spices, I proceeded to answer my comment, in the feeding of hot countries to fight infections. The increase in body heat, such as fever, combat microbes. For the temperature of the water, try at least once. You talk about a welfare with cold water, the feeling lasts a short time compared to that with hot water, I assure you. Bookman.

elizabeth said...

that poor cat looks so miserable. rather like Atlas when I tried to give him a bath the other night. (clearly he ignored my explanation that it would cool him down ;)

I hope you're managing to stay somewhat cool!

:)

Erika C. said...

I just mentioned you on my blog again today and I finally joined as a follower. I don't know why I didn't do that sooner.

Hope you cool off soon. I love all the interesting art you posted and I second what everyone said about how expressive the kitty's face is!!

love,
Erika

Snowbrush said...

"Wednesday's high temperature of 107 degrees"

I am so sorry to hear about your heat wave. Here in Eugene, we only had 105, although there is some fear that it could get hot at some later time. Because I can find no meteorologcal evidence for this belief, I can but assume it is a panic reaction by people who, perhaps, have visited your area and witnessed the misery inflicted by real heat.

[Shadow Alin] said...

That kitty is so cute <3 By the way, awesome paintings on your blog, you have very nice tastes in art :)

Lydia said...

@cathwrynn- I visited your friend's blog and was very much impressed. Thanks for the referral!

HEY: Does anyone out there know how to reset your screen to reverse a black background/white print page? I hate to admit that it's true, but that format really does make eyes over about 52 or so just go buggy! The result is that I can't stay on a site like that for very long and always have to read blogs using it during the day when there's natural light that somewhat diminishes the shock.

@Melinda- Sorry you've had the heat too, and I do envy the swimming pool. I haven't had a swim suit on for soooo long. I've lately been dreaming of my days at Lake Tahoe in my Nevada days.....

@bookmanie- Do you notice that Melinda, in her comments, addressed your advice saying "there's truth to what he/she said" ?? Now I have wondered if you are he or she, and although the mystery is fun...if you choose to declare yourself that would be fun too!
I'm so sorry about your dual Achilles heal injuries. Painful, miserable, and very sad. It seems there would be surgery for this. I hope you find a cure.

@elizabeth- Atlas doesn't like baths? I thought he would be agreeable to anything you asked of him! I guess even in the best of loving partnerships (which I think you and that amazing dog share) there is some disagreement.

@Erika- Thanks! Maybe you thought because I followed you that you had done the same.
(I found the receipt for my violin yesterday....2007. It really is getting ridiculous that I haven't arranged for lessons.)

@Snowbrush- Love that name, and it's great to hear from someone in Eugene. What a special city, and this reminds me that I haven't driven down there for some time...
Good to know that things are cool there in the southern part of the Willamette Valley, where you are enjoying a moderate 105 degrees. You guys sure know how to chill.

@Shadow Alin- The kitty is great, I agree. I still want to put a towel around him and feed him treats.
YOU have amazing art at your blog and it's original art by YOU!

Lydia said...

@Hattie- I wonder how in the heck I missed responding to your comment above! I read it in my email box that blogger sends and thought hmmm, I don't remember my reply to that one..... I wonder if the 4th of July when it was 105 when you were there in Portland was the year I was in Ashland and it was so hot that the city canceled the fireworks.
Again, if you find this please accept my apologies for missing you.

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