We’re experiencing a record breakingly hot summer this year, and I assume a lot of you struggled to stay cool during the heat wave.
In Japan, the majority of areas hit over 30°C every summer. Other than having air conditioning, how do people keep going during the hot days?
This is a traditional way of mitigating the increase of temperatures in cities. People sprinkle water on the ground in the early morning, and after the sun has gone down. The ground, especially when covered by concrete, accumulates a lot of heat from the sun, and plays a large part in roasting the city from the bottom! Uchimizu is not only useful in reducing the temperature, but also cools the air that passes over the wet ground. Interestingly, Uchimizu has caught a lot of attention recently as the eco-friendly way of surviving in the hot summer – as it doesn’t require any energy or electricity! Osaka and Tokyo, along with other prefectures, have run an event – the “Uchimizu Project” – to encourage people to do Uchimizu since 2003. At the event, they avoid using fresh water and instead reclaim wasted water that was filtered at sewerage stations.
Mugicha – barley tea – is made from roasted barley and is the signature drink of Japanese summer. The tea contains a lot of minerals which help hydrate your body and avoid dehydration. Also as it doesn’t contain caffeine, it’s a perfect drink for children, and those avoiding caffeine. With its nutty taste, it’s a great substitute for coffee! We’ve added mugicha from Ippodo into our collection this summer – it comes as tea bags and is great for brewing with cold water. You can simply put one bag into a litre of so, water and leave it in the refrigerator over night.
As the season where arguable the tastiest fruit and veg grows, there no shortage of fresh, and seasonal produce in summer. In Japan. you’ll see a lots of unique summer vegetables such as Edamame, Okra, Goya (Bitter melon), and Kabocha (pumpkin) growing on farms in Japan. People believe that these help your body cool down from the inside and unlike drinking iced drinks, eating vegetables doesn’t make your stomach cold. Usually people enjoy their vegetables with noodles to stay healthy in summer.
What do you do to stay cool in the summer?