In Which We Wait for the Central Heating

Every year, we have a lot of fun (dubious) waiting for my apartment building’s owners to decide it’s time to turn on the heat. It saves them a lot of money if they can manage to wait until November 1, but it almost always turns cold around the middle of the month. Then it warms up a little around Halloween and the beginning of November. This makes turning on the heat seem something of a waste. They may turn on the heat to the professional office area of the building, but not to the apartments.

This has been the occasion of much controversy, on occasion. Generally we’re okay with this, as it helps keep rent down and it doesn’t get really cold. Who cares if it’s 65? But the year when it did get really cold and we had the one guy fighting cancer (still with us, happily), people got really irate and they did turn it on. (We also got a rent increase later, but that would have happened anyway.)

The thing is, every year it takes me a while to remember to do something about the chill. :) This year, since the daytime was relatively warm until very late in the week, I kept forgetting to use my alternate heating sources before bedtime or break out the extra blankets. So of course I didn’t sleep well, and felt sluggish all day. (Especially since it’s been very sinus-y weather.) But today I remembered, and now my apartment is toasty. Also, I remembered where I stored the sweaters and extra blankets. Much nicer.

They’ll soon be putting covers on the air conditioners outside, and starting up the radiators inside. So I’d like to get this place really clean, since the maintenance guys will be in here. :) I’ll also have to make another “radiator reflector’/inside cover for the air conditioner vents. I did that last year, with cardboard and bubble wrap covered in aluminum foil. It made a big difference when it came to keeping the cold out and the heat in. (And the big windstorm out, too. For once, my over-engineering paranoia came in handy!) I decided to wait to do it this year, since it’s been so much warmer until now. I may change my mind.

The thing is, it’s a lot easier for me to put it up before the heat comes on. But it makes the maintenance guys a lot more nervous. (Nobody wants a fire.) I was very careful last year to make absolutely sure that nothing fell on the hot water coils, and radiator reflectors are highly recommended; but I don’t like to make the maintenance guys nervous. I want to stay on good terms with them.

Anyway, I spent most of the day alternating watching TV and doing chores, with the exception of some walks outside and shopping. It was pleasant, and I think I got a lot done.

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