So you worry about global warming? The latest is that it might actually be good for your health so you shouldn’t worry about it. It’s just a lot of hot air according to those in the know. Just be prepared and have your fan ready. According to a study done by the UK’s the Department of Health and Health Protection Agency (HPA), global warming might actually be a better than you think. Just be prepared and you should be oki-doki. Or at least those in the UK. Yeh, right.

I wonder of this will work in Africa as well?Let’s look at the tips they gave people to help them survive this global warming phenomenon in the UK and implement these in Africa.

1. Have a fan.What? Genius! I am a big fan of Bafana Bafana (stop laughing) and I know a number of other Bafana Bafana fans. I’ll just bring them with then. No problem. I have a fan with me – a Bafana Bafana fan. Now what? Oops, sorry. You meant a fan like in a gadget that blows air around? What, like a politician? Oh, this thing with the propellers. Thanks. But how does it do the blowing bit? And what is this long rope sticking out at the end? I need to stick it in where? An ‘eletricity outlet’? What the hell is that dude? No can do. We don’t have electricity coming out the walls you know. Maybe I’ll just fan myself with a few leaves or do it Kenneth Kaunda style with a white handkerchief. But no luck on the fan though. Let’s try the next tip.

2. Keep windows open as long as cooler outside. No problem with the window bit. We don’t have any windows. Maybe in the big cities, but not out on the farms. But I do have a problem with the technical bit of cooler outside though. Won’t everything get way hot if it is global warming? So outside might be boiling hot and still be cooler than inside. Bit of a problem that one. From the fire into the frying pan. Literally. The difference between outside and inside – being boiled or being fried. Your choice. I’ll go back to the fan, thanks.

3. Invest in blinds. What? You mean like in blind people? How the hell is that going to help me? Will they fan me while I tell them it is something else? I think that is so typical of you guys. Pick someone to discriminate against and exploit them. I will have no part in this. Oh, sorry! You mean a cloth type of thing in front of the windows. No problem. We’ll just hang the mosquito nets in front of the windows. Double whammy. Stay cool and stay alive. But can you send a few more our way?

4. Keep hydrated. No problem. I’ll keep drinking those Cokes and Castles. Easiest thing you have asked me so far. We like our beer. But how much is enough? Same thing my wife asks me every night. But you have given me a good excuse I can use. “Honey, I am really doing this to fight global warming. Really, I promise you. The umlungu said I should drink a bit more to keep hydrated. You know we have no running water and I don’t want you to walk the 10 miles to the river each day when you don’t even know if it has dried up or not“. Cheers, thanks for that one.

5. Eat regularly, and keep salt levels up. I thought you were serious about this. Come on now. I make less than a $1 a day. How am I going to pay for all that food with salt? You think the woman in the market will have the salt levels on the nutrition label on the back of the mielies/corn, fruit and veg? I don’t even know where the next meal is coming from. Never mind where my bloody salt is coming from. The only salt I taste is the sweat I taste while working on the farm to feed everyone in the world.

And I am not sure how long that will last either. The problem is, you see, that all this heat is starting to impact our production over here. Uganda coffee farmers are already starting to feel the affect of global warming, Droughts and sporadic rain will continue to affect our crops. And sometimes we will have good times and sometimes not. And we won’t know if it will hit the whole country or only parts of it. Ethiopia had bumper crops, but bad spells in certain areas. You might argue that this has always happened. And maybe it has and maybe it hasn’t. I can only react to what I see. And what I see tells me it won’t get any easier over the next few years and decades. Better get used to it. You got the tips on how to survive though haven’t you?

What really annoys me is that the UK Department of Health actually tries to put a positive spin on this. See they argue that less people will die from the heat during global warming than from the cold right now. They will experience a better climate as the UK heats up – from a miserable and damp little island to a sunny holiday destination. The new Bahamas. They are trying to argue that it will actually be better for them! (Ever watched Life of Brian? Sounds a bit like them singing Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life.) Stuff those outside the UK. Every country for itself now. What do we have to look forward to? Beachfront property in Zambia with the sea levels rising? Shark cage diving in Zimbabwe? Chad, better start getting your navy ready to fight off the Spanish trawlers.

But in the meantime for those in the UK, close those blinds so I can’t see you eating those salty crisps and drinking that bottled water. And close the windows and turn up the fan, it’s getting hot out here.

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