Alice-Azania Jarvis: The heat has done wonders for my bank balance

In The Red
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The Independent Online

Apparently there's a heatwave. Not that you'd know it from where I'm sitting - our air conditioning is sufficiently Arctic as to make you forget these things. Still, present freezingness aside, the week's roasting temperatures (combined with the magnetic pull of Wimbledon) have, at least, had a positive effect on my bank balance.

For a start, the hot water hasn't been used since Monday. Instead, it's been cold showers all the way. Likewise the heating, which my flatmate has a tendency to turn on at the slightest drop of the mercury.

In fact, come to think of it, I haven't had to use my oven either. Or my grill, or my kettle, or my stove. The only device I've needed is my fridge. Who wants hot food in weather like this? Not me. It's salad and ice-cream all the way, please.

And of course, my transport bill's lower too. Not for me the hot sweaty ordeal of the Central Line. I've been running, walking or cycling practically everywhere. The only time I ventured onto the tube was Wednesday morning, when things seemed slightly cooler. Of course, they weren't: they were unbearable.

It was utterly sweltering, not to mention intolerably slow. And, of course, the carriages were jammed with tourists on their way to see Murray play at Wimbledon.

Speaking of which: there is, I think, another explanation for my unusually virtuous spending habits. Namely, the tennis. I have been unable to go out, for fear of missing that all important game. When Murray's on, I'm even worse. I can't do anything: talk, eat, check my email. As a result, my social life has pretty much faded to black. Not that I need to worry; it's the same for almost all my friends.

We had tried to organise a couple of tennis-centric get-togethers, but rapidly abandoned the plan after our first attempt. Inevitably, there will always be someone who isn't as interested as you are and, frankly, I'd rather watch on my own than have match point talked over.

So, basically, I've had zero reason to spend money this week. I haven't needed to buy drinks, or to entertain. I haven't had to cook, or stay warm.

I haven't even needed to get anywhere – or, at least, anywhere that I couldn't get to without the help of my bicycle or trainers. Is this what it would be like living in permanently warm climate: no necessary expenses except for the odd ice-cream here and there? It's enough to make you emigrate. Almost.

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