Last night was probably the best night ever. My husband woke up in the middle of the night saying, “Are you hot? It’s so hot in here I can’t sleep.” I immediately threw off the covers and ran to the thermostat. I resisted the temptation to set it to 62.

The first time I ever went over to my husband’s house I couldn’t breathe. His house was kept at a constant 78. If you’ve ever been to the Washington area in the summer, you know how miserable it can be. To have the inside of your house be as humid as the outside is just too much.

At my apartment in McLean, we fluctuated from 68-72. If I had lived by myself, it would have been 62. (I’m sure Sarah would have been on the higher end of that.)

Growing up in Pakistan, we had individual ac units in each room. In the 90s the Embassy got fancy and we got units with remote controls. That meant that my bedroom could be kept at whatever temperature I wanted. I could even lie in bed and change the temperature. There were times when I would crawl under three or four layers of covers and set the temperature as low as it could go. (I realize now this was a terrible waste, but at the time it was just wonderful.)

In Pakistan, during different political regimes, they would inflict upon the masses a dreadful phenomenon called load shedding. In an attempt to conserve and save, the government turned off the power in different sectors of the city. This meant that we would swelter. There were even nights when I would take a huge bath sheet, soak it with cold water and cover my bed with it just so that it was cool enough to sleep.

The first time I visited my husband’s parents’ house, the home he grew up in, I noticed nothing about the temperature. The whole night was a blur really. However, the first time I was there in the summer I realized where he got it. There was little difference between the outside temperature and the inside.

After my husband and I had dated for a couple years, he announced to me that he was willing to have his house be at a cool 76. I hadn’t asked and had hardly complained but I had on more than one occasion tampered with the thermostat.

In married life, we have reached a compromise. Our thermostat is set to 72 though I may or may not have rigged it to be at a breezy 62.

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