Tuesday, April 5, 2011

29º on Monday

No, it wasn't cold yesterday. It was 85ºF here. A welcome warm day after weeks of chilly weather. I'm trying to become efficient at converting from Fahrenheit to Celsius, but let's face it, without a calculator, there is no way for this gringo to get it exactly right. I mean, I can do the subtraction part in my head (Temp in Fº - 32). But then you have to multiply that by 5/9.  5 divided by 9 is 0.55555556.  If I round that to 0.5, then it's possible for me to make the calculation in my... ummm, senior citizenized head. No offense to you geriatric brainiacs. But if I round 5/9 to 0.5, then the temperature in C. will be off by a few degrees. In other words, if it is 104ºF, I might tell someone that it is 36ºC ( 104-32 x 0.5 ). The correct answer would be 40ºC.  36ºC would be 96.8ºF, much cooler than the actual 104ºF! The difference between copiously sweating and more copiously sweating.

Now, if you want to convert from Celsius to Fahrenheit, here's how: (9/5 * Tc) + 32 = Tf.  So, if it is 40ºC you multiply 9/5 or 1.8 times 40 and add 32, which =104ºF.  Forget about rounding the 1.8 up to 2.0. That would come out to 112ºF and I would most likely submerge myself in the pool for the entire day in an attempt to avoid most copiously sweating.

Here's what I have come up with.  Between 21ºC and 27ºC is perfect (70-80ºF), between 28ºC and 34ºC is warm (82-93ºF) so dress appropriately. Between 35ºC and 39ºC (95-102ºF) is hot, so be prepared to sweat and ALWAYS walk on the shady side of the street. When the thermometer tops 39ºC, I plan to stay in or near the pool whenever possible. Oh, and 20ºC and below (but not too much below) is ideal for sleeping sin A/C.

Finally, if my body temperature is greater than 37ºC (98.6ºF), I will need to take some acetaminophen because I have a fever. If it hits 40ºC or higher I should probably visit the servicio de urgencias.


  1. I had hoped for various responses to my 'heat index' to see what other people think. Once we are in Merida full time, you might be right. 28-34C will most likely be the closest to perfect we will get. Growing up in the southern US, I adapted to the humid, 90+ temp summers and actually prefer that. In the mid-Atlantic we get some pretty cold temps and snow. I don't think I have adapted as well to the cold.

  2. I inadvertently deleted Debbie's comment from earlier. Here it is, with my response above:

    In Canada, people my age grew up with both F and C, as the country was switching to metric. I know exactly what temperatures feel like in both scales, but never learned how to convert. Thanks for the tip!
    People's internal thermostats are funny, aren't they. I think 28-34C is about perfect, while I think the rest of the family would agree with you.

  3. A quick way to go from C to F is double the temp, subtract 10% and add 32.
    So double 40, get 80 subtract 10% or 8, get 72 then add 32 to get 104. It really is fast to do since calculating 10% is easy.

    Enjoying your blog.

  4. I'm definitely not a math whiz, but I can actually do this without a calculator! Thanks

    Glad you are enjoying.