In July, the sun rises before 5:30 in Miyazaki, and my day starts early.
By 7 o’clock, Momo (my 5-year-old Papillon) and Yuki (my 2-year-old Japanese Spitz) have had their morning stroll by a nearby pond and begin looking for a cool spot to rest.
This year, Japan has been in the grips of unusually hot weather. Maximum temperatures in Miyazaki have been nearing 40 °C, setting record highs.
Local restaurants are making brisk sales of summer favorites such as hiyashi somen (chilled noodles) and kakigōri (flavored shaved ice). Uchiwa paper fans and colorful yukata summer kimonos are flying off store shelves!
While excessive heat poses a health risk for humans, it can be even more severe for pets.
These lovely creatures run around with their underbellies close to the ground.
Among other heat-related hazards, pavement temperatures can stay very hot for hours even after the sun has gone down.
I keep Momo and Yuki indoors during the hottest time of the day.
Their favorite to-go places are nearby Aoshima and Kisaki beaches after sunset. They get to run as much as they want, play in the water, and search for little crabs.
By the time we get home around 9 pm, we are all exhausted! It’s time to get cleaned up, have a light supper, and get comfortable on our futons (they have their own).
While asleep, Momo and Yuki make muffled woofs and wag their tails. I’d like to think they dream about their beach adventures.
It’ll be 5:30 am soon, and another glorious, albeit hot day will begin in Miyazaki.
I’ll be ready; so will Momo and Yuki.