Friday, 25 November 2016

The Best of Harmattan.

In the classic movie “Home Alone” there was a specific scene where one of the thieves was burnt by a fire and he ran out and dug is head inside a pile of snow. This is the season where snow falls in Europe and this is the time where sub-Sahara Africa experience harmattan.

Harmarttan is a dusty wind from the Sahara that blows toward the western coast of Africa during the winter in Europe. Every season has it’s peculiar benefits and challenges and Harmattan is not any different.

This particular season that we are in before the yuletide, ushers in some specific challenges like extreme heat, cold weather, and fogs that blur vision in the early hours of the day.

Extreme hot weather can be life-threatening and farmers suffer from it and soon the people pay for it as a result of the high price of agricultural products.

The harmarttan season is a major disparity between the north and southern Nigerian, while this season is extreme in the north, the mild effect in the south does not rob it of its capacity to bring heat, high temperature that forces creeping rodents and reptiles that likes cold environments e.g. snakes, centipedes, to seek refuge in cooler places like our homes, this in itself is a major challenge and as such precautions should be taken to protect ourselves and loved one from such potential attacks.

Here are a few of what we can do during this period to stay safe during harmattanarttan.

1. Do not open Windows for too long, snakes and other rodents can creep in through it.

2. Every cool environment outside the house should be properly checked before settling in. E.g. under trees with cooling shade.

3. Use protective net doors, if you must open your doors for fresh air in the evening, these reptiles e.g. centipedes, snakes can move without making any sound and you won't hear or see it come inside your house.

4. Avoid spreading of clothes on the field or open grass, as snakes can crawl and remain under this clothes, one can make the mistake of packing them with the clothes into the house.

5. Monitor your environment and bedrooms periodically and employ the services of a pesticide or insecticide experts to quarantine or fumigate your environment.

6. Sleep under mosquito nets and inside your house, the danger from heat is cannot be compared to that of the open air outside your house.
Aside from the challenge of reptiles, there’s also the challenge of heat rash and muscle cramp and cool environment can help one deal with this challenge.

Like fire, the snake is not an emergency that one should confront alone, in case of an emergency one should raise an alarm or call for help to arrest the situation.

Despite the challenges associated with harmarttan, we cannot also deny that there are a few benefits we enjoy in our city during the harmattan season.

1. People will go to cooler environment more this days for simple things like water or ice cream. I will not be surprised if there’s a rush at the mall, for cold drinks, ice cream or water.

2. This is also a great time to express kindness to breastfeeding mothers, as they will carry more loads right now for their children, especially those without cars. They will carry water, umbrella, bags and their baby under this heat and still go about their daily business.

3. This is the time to enjoy the swimming pool. If you are fortunate to have in your house beautiful, but if you are not, then with a thousand naira or less one can have a great time at swimming pools in Warri. E.g. T.M Hotel and Tervana at Cedar House along Airport road, also Golden Tullip and Wellington Hotel on PTI Express road.

4. This is also a fine time to enjoy movies at air conditioned cinema, e.g. check out lighthouse cinema, their movie price are fair, five hundred naira week days and they have great movies, it’s a great time to relax there.

5. Don’t forget people will drink more beer this season, coupled with the festive ambiance that is beginning to envelop the city.

6. This season can also increase the productivity of workers as everyone gets to work early and leaves late because they want to luxuriate in A.C.

This is the time where electrical bills balloon beyond the normal, but if the electricity supply is above normal, we can help to douse the effect of the bill.

If you are a lover of fire work or pyrotechnics, you should be careful about the areas where you release or shoot them.

We invite you to post your own serious or funny responses about the harmattan here. Even if your own region isn’t currently experiencing sizzling conditions, what other benefits can you imagine from this heat where you live?

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