Constantly changing weather is nothing new for Orange County residents and especially for students at UCI. But to go from very hot to cold and rainy in less than a week is nothing short of peculiar. Two weeks ago, Sept. 27 was one of the hottest days recorded in Irvine, nearly bursting glass and mercury at 106 F. This is second only to one instance in 1963 when temperatures in Irvine reached 111 F.
On campus, students trudged through the oppressive heat on their way to class, their shirts drenched in sweat, as they sought shelter in the classroom or in the food court. In class, countless students, TAs and even professors fanned themselves with their class notes in a desperate attempt to ward off the overwhelming warmth. Almost everywhere, air conditioners ran at full strength that day.
Students’ responses to this drastic change in weather varied.
Second-year nursing major Megan Ginther said she normally preferred warmer temperatures, but she found this sweltering heat overwhelming.
“I like the sun; it was a little too hot though,” Ginther said. “It was hard to pay attention in class because we had to put a big fan in our room.”
Denise Mamaliger, a second-year economics major had a different opinion.
“I hate it,” Mamaliger said. “I hate the sun. It kinda freaked me out because it shows how bad global warming is right now. I just stayed inside as much as possible.”
“It reminded me of when I was back in Pakistan,” Saif Kibriy, a fourth-year criminology major, said. “SoCal doesn’t get that hot. Especially not in Orange County. It’s never been like that, as far as I can remember.”
For Kibriy, such a hot day proved to be perfect for sports. “I dealt with it in a weird way,” Kibriy said. “Most people wouldn’t want to do activities and stuff, but I felt like it was so hot that this was the best time to go out and play basketball and stuff.”
Campus establishments, however, profited from the high temperature, offering students both shelter from the heat and the rain in the week that followed. Most importantly, however, it offered an ice-cold drink on an extremely hot day.
“Jamba Juice is a pretty weather-driven business,” Sallie Petras, the manager of the local Jamba Juice at the UCI Student Center, said. “So whenever it’s hot, our business goes up.”
The campus Jamba Juice normally has approximately 400 customers a day. But on the 27th, there were nearly 800 customers lining up for a desperately needed smoothie – this tops out increased sales of over 100 percent; extremely impressive for the on-campus juicery.
When asked how she likes the hot weather, Petras smiled and gave an honest answer: “I love it. It was great for business! But with the rain, it slowed down. We only did half the business. So, we’ll take the hot stuff!”
After such a hot week, followed by the rain the following week, UCI students are left wondering what they can expect next from Mother Nature. Regardless of what might be unleashed upon our hapless scholars, a good, solid roof to provide shade and shelter along with a working air-conditioning and heating unit will always be a welcomed sight