Of course Coastal North Carolina can also be pretty warm in the waning days of June of this especially hot summer.
In spite of all that I have been successfully mowing my yard in the heat of the day for nearly two years. I put my straw hat on and fire up my trusty Toro and off I go.
Sometimes I go jump in the pool after mowing and once in a while it takes the ocean to cool me off.
All was going fine until today. Some special circumstances ended up giving my wife a real scare.
I have been burning the candle at both ends for a couple of weeks. We have had company, and I have done a lot of early morning fishing followed by a full day of work.
This morning it took a little longer than normal to get my Applepeels post done and it was about eleven am before I started mowing. It was something over 85 degrees Fahrenheit with the humidity at 100% when I started mowing.
I mowed a couple of rounds and felt a bite on my ankle. My wife who was talking to our neighbor didn't hear me ask her to bring me some itch gel so after a couple of trips around the yard, I stopped and went in and put some gel on the bite.
I started the mower up and began another round. By the time I got to the road I was very dizzy. I told my wife to bring the mower in because I didn't feel very good.
I managed to make it to the house and found a nice cool spot on the carpet with an air conditioning vent blowing on me. Of course my wife followed me in and saw me on the carpet. I think she thought I was dead. Of course that wasn't the case. I asked for something cold to drink and ended up with an iced Coke from the fridge.
I wasn't having any pain or numbness so I wasn't really worried, but I tried to get up a couple of times and the dizziness was still there. Of course I was also sweating a lot. I finally agreed to let her call 911 and just in case I took a couple of Bufferin.
In the very few minutes before they arrived, the dizziness disappeared, and I was able to get up, go to bathroom and switch out of my damp clothes. I had also cooled off enough to sit up in an easy chair.
The fire truck arrived first and their emergency team checked my blood pressure which was 120/65, my blood sugar, and my oxygen levels. My blood sugar was slightly elevated which they deduced was likely from the Coke and I just had. Since my oxygen levels were down, they put me on oxygen about the time Paramedics arrived. They did a heart strip on me and redid many of the tests which I had already had.
They came to the conclusion that I was dehydrated and had become overheated. The prescription was Gatorade and rest with lots of other fluids.
When I started thinking about it, for one reason or another I had taken in less fluid over the last few days. I usually drink a glass or two of juice or water in the evening. Last night I forgot to do that. This morning I had been rushing and had less than my normal couple of glasses of fluid.
What surprised me was how quick it happened and how hot I got without really being outside very long. I guess I was very lucky to get myself back to the air conditioned house where I could start cooling off.
I was very impressed with the professionalism of the Carteret County emergency folks. They were great.
Of course I was determined to finish mowing my yard tomorrow morning. My neighbor Len heard about that and mowed it as soon as he got home from work. Good neighbors like that are hard to find.
Still it was a hard way to get out of mowing my yard. Next time before I mow, I'll mow earlier in the day and make sure I have had plenty of fluid including some Gatorade before I start.