I have lived most of my life in the Midwest, where there are four distinct seasons and autumn has become my personal favorite. January may be the beginning of the year according to the calendar, but for me, fall is in fact about new beginnings. Football is back, my boys return to school, and consequently, my wife is a much happier person. And everyone knows when momma's happy, everybody's happy.
But in the land of our fair city's namesake over 10,000 people died during a two-week period when the temperatures routinely exceeded 100 degrees F. Why in the world did so many people perish in France while at the same time there were no appreciable deaths attributed to weather in the American West, which was experiencing similar, and in some cases more dire, conditions?