Yesterday, I was planning to finally tackle restaining the deck. I scrubbed it down to remove the algae and dirt, and then we went to eat while the sun dried it back off again.

When we got home, the deck was dry, so I grabbed the stain and a brush and was headed out the door to do the deed when Va said, “The AC isn’t working.” And she was right. This represented a new priority, so I put down the stain & brush, and went after my toolbox.

Last fall the AC conked out on us because the terminals had corroded off the capacitor. I bought a new capacitor, but it was so late in the season then, that I waited until this spring to put it in. While I was in there, I had to replace several terminals that had also corroded to the point of unusability. Then sometime last month, it stopped again. Another terminal had rotted off. I changed it out, and voila – we had air again in under five minutes. So when it quit yesterday, I figured it had to be another rotted terminal, and sure enough, I found one more.

I replaced it, but the magic did not work this time. I believe that it is the relay this time. One of the contacts on it had a piece broken off, and the unit had been buzzing very loudly as a failing relay will do. I just hope it didn’t take out anything else.

I decided that this was probably beyond my capabilities, and planned to call someone today. We resigned ourselves to being hot, got out the fans, and I stained the deck (mostly – it needs a second coat, and I only did the floor so far).

After I went to bed, I got to thinking about that relay. I went downstairs and Googled the part number. The first hit was the outfit from whom I ordered the capacitor last fall. So I ordered a new relay and went back to bed. It will be here tomorrow. I will put it in and pray that that fixes it.

We are soft. It’s 80 degrees inside (77 outside), and we are all sweaty. Beth had a really hard time getting to sleep. It must be 85 upstairs. I put a fan on her, but we’ve only got one more. Va’s seriously considering sleeping in the basement tonight.

We didn’t have central air when I was a kid until I was in high school. I can well remember spending seemingly endless miserable nights trying to get to sleep while soaked in sweat. I’d turn the pillow over because the underside was more cool. But that trick would only work once. A friend of mine from Australia had much the same experience, which led him to remark to me one day, “Air conditioning may have destroyed the ozone layer, but it was worth it.”

I totally understand that sentiment.

Of course 85 degrees is nothing compared to what I went through as a kid. And it is nothing compared to what a lot of people here in New Hampshire go through every summer (central air is a rare commodity here), or what southerners deal with 9 months out of the year. And it is really nothing compared to what our men in uniform deal with in Iraq and Afghanistan.

I fully acknowledge that we are absolutely spoiled, but man… I really don’t like hot nights!