Finding A/C in Southern California Requires Seeking It Out; Thus the Rare ‘Vons Days’
It’s hot, even by beach standards.
Normally, when the rest of Los Angeles is sweltering, the beach is basking in mild temperatures cooled by a nice ocean breeze.
But occasionally, the beach also bakes. The breeze disappears and the air is as still as a volleyball pole. Usually, it’s the Santa Ana winds that blow the hot air from the desert to the beach. Sometimes, a high pressure cell just sits out in the desert and doesn’t allow the cool breeze to blow to the beach.
Now people not from Southern California – especially from Southern beaches – will say just crank up the air and chill out inside. But there’s almost no air conditioning at Southern California’s beaches. Not in any houses or apartments anyway. And many businesses, either.
The reason is that these hot days only occur a couple dozen days a year. It’s too expensive to put A/C in home and apartments for a few days of discomfort. The rest of the time, we don’t need air conditioning.
As hard that is to fathom for a Southerner – you should have seen the look on my face when I moved here and was told my apartment had no A/C because it didn’t need it – it’s true. Until you actually experience it, it’s impossible to believe it’s true.
So when these hot days hit, I have a solution. I go to Vons.
That’s a grocery store. And not just any grocery store or any Vons, but the one in Manhattan Beach. It’s a small location downtown on the corner of Valley/Ardmore and Manhattan Beach Blvd. Why that one? Because they CRANK up the air in that place. I’ll go there and just walk up and down the aisles (especially the one on the far left; it’s like standing in the meat locker.)
If you’re in there any other time of the year it’s freezing but on these days it’s a welcome relief. No other place – not the Manhattan Village Mall or other businesses – offer such relief.
And that’s why I refer to these rare days as Vons Days.