Spending Time In Temperate Climates May Prolong Your Life

Want to live longer? Well, when you consider what extreme weather, both good and bad, can do for your health, you may decide to exit your home town, pronto, and move to a friendly climate.

First of all, cold weather brings on all sorts of aches and pains that should send you running for the next plane, if your arthritis does not prevent it. “Cold damp days mean aching bones and joints for arthritis suffers”, says Environment Canada’s EnviroZine. So does rising humidity, rapidly falling barometric pressure and gusty winds, says Intellicast. My Doctor tells me that almost every person over forty years old has some degree of arthritis.

Who would have thought that changes in barometric pressure could cause so much havoc? EnviroZine states that rates of heart attacks increase with changes in air masses. This article also notes that blood pressure changes with outside temperatures, as does the blood clot rate.

Besides being hard on your health, cold weather restricts your interaction with the environment. If you did not need to, you would probably not choose to trudge through dirty snow or slippery ice-covered roads on a daily basis for much of the winter. Icy pathways can be dangerous and rainy climates chill to the bone. So, unless you are skiing, the weather restricts you to indoor exercise, or sometimes, no exercise if you cannot make it to the gym. Rain and wind make walking unpleasant for many.

Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD, is triggered by long grey sunless days and lack of bright light. Light affects brain chemistry and sufferers feel depressed and listless when they do not get enough sun. Some inhabitants of the west coast rain forest say can feel moss growing on their backs. Rain is the major topic of conversation and many do feel depressed.

According to Intellicast, “bright sunshine, light winds, comfortable (slightly below normal) temperatures and low humidity and high pressure give the greatest positive boost to our moods.” However, when the Chinook or Santa Ana winds blow, moods can turn sour because of the hot, dry winds.

Extreme hot weather also brings challenges. Air pollution in crowded urban cities goes through the roof on hot days as a thick yellow haze sits on the horizon. Respiratory conditions such as emphysema and bronchial asthma become worse and radios announce that the sick and the elderly should stay indoors. Extreme heat can cause heat exhaustion or heat stroke.

Too much humidity, of both the warm or cold variety can also be challenging for those with lung congestion. Add to this mix the rash of allergy sufferers who, because of pollen or mold spores endure months of runny noses, red eyes and sneezing during various times of the year. It is hard for many to stay well because of climate.

Proof exists that a moderate climate is best for health. Intellicast.com states that, “the pain and weather relationship has been established beyond reasonable doubt from controlled studies.” The Germans coined a word for it Biometeorology, and their meteorological service offers information to the medical community on a daily basis of which ailments might show exacerbated symptoms because of the weather.

What to do, what to do?

Dr Warren Bland, a geographer who wrote the book Retire in Style: 50 Affordable Places across America, notes that most people do best in a temperate climate, somewhere around the mid-seventies Fahrenheit or around twenty degrees Celsius. If you are considering a move in retirement, look at the weather charts as a major factor in your decision. It might be that you need or want two homes, so you can enjoy reasonable temperatures all year round.

Depending on their latitude, be aware that properties near oceans or lakes can have temperatures considerably hotter or colder. Constant sea breezes are wonderful in warm climates and bone-numbing in cold. From the extremes of being too cold, the summers in many tropical countries are unbearable by the coast because of the high humidity, but lovely in the highlands. This is why many people move to higher inland cities in Mexico or Panama.

Because you are not being subjected to temperature extremes, a pleasant climate encourages an active outdoor lifestyle. If one of your retirement goals is to become active, consider your climate. If it is easy and pleasant to be outdoors for several hours each day you will do it. Spending your days walking, bicycling, breathing fresh air and enjoying the sun will permeate your body and soul with a wonderful sense of well being.

While I did meet one individual who wants to move to Whitehorse, far north in the Yukon Territories, when he retires, most of us savor warmth. It makes your body shine. La belle vita!

Mahara Sinclaire, M.Ed.

© Mahara Sinclaire, 2007

[email protected]

Time for Cruising

Welcome to Cruising Italian Style, a holiday at sea offering you an endless choice of opportunities, both on board ship and ashore. You can have as much freedom as you want on a Costa Cruise, because you can tailor your cruise to suit you. Choose from a dazzling array of itineraries and discover the experience they call Cruising Italian Style across the oceans.

So many pleasures await you onboard that you can indulge in the vacation of a lifetime without ever setting foot on land. Will you join in the dozens of shipboard activities like art auctions, horse racing, bridge games, Italian lessons and trivia contests? Or learn to prepare perfect pesto in an Italian cooking class? Explore all the possibilities available to you when you’re Cruising Italian Style. Families, friends, couples, singles and honeymooners alike are sailing away for the vacation of their dreams and eliminating the hassles of planning a vacation. A cruise is one convenient vacation where you won’t have to worry about catching your next flight as you travel from one destination to another, packing and unpacking your bags. You’ll find that a Costa Cruise ship is a floating resort offering every comfort, convenience and amenity that one could imagine. You can lie back and be completely pampered. Or you can go non-stop enjoying one great show after another – dine like never before – try your luck in the lively casino, or dance the night away to pulsating beats in the disco. It’s no wonder that more people are taking a cruise vacation than ever before. And once you get a taste of cruising, you’ll also want to come back for more again.

In fact, cruises have the highest customer satisfaction over any other vacation experience!


Dance classes – Get in step with everything from fox-trot to hip-hop! Deck and pool games – A great way to meet other guests and win some cool prizes. Cooking demonstrations – Learn the secrets of Italian cooking from the masters! Italian language classes – Pick up useful phrases in conversational Italian. Fitness – For the casual fitness enthusiast to the fitness devotee, Costa ships offer state-of-the-art fitness facilities and a wide range of conditioning activities including fitness walks, aerobics, stretch and relaxation.

Spa – Select from a la carte treatments or personalised packages for massages, facials and herbal wraps.

Port and shopping lectures – Everything you ever wanted to know about your next port of call.

Night-time at sea – At night, you’ll find a variety of entertainment – watch a Broadway style show in the theatre, wander into the piano bar, try your luck in the casino or step out to a dance band out on the deck. Then you can head to the disco where the DJ spins hits all night long.


Costa offers all kinds of dining options, so you can eat formally or casually in open air, in a restaurant or in your stateroom – any time of day or night! Dining choices abound from poolside dining to midnight buffets. Each day, you may choose to dine casual at the buffet, traditional in the main restaurant or in one of our world-class specialty restaurants. Cozy bistros serve pizza, gelato, cappuccino and espresso and room service awaits your call 24 hours a day.


When visiting one of our ports of call, the easiest and most enjoyable way to familiarise yourself with the territory is to take one of the cruise’s shore excursions. Costa’s cruise shore excursions are an exciting facet of Cruising Italian Style and offer unique insights of the fascinating ports and historic sites which you’ll be visiting. And each excursion is carefully researched by our shore excursions staff to ensure your experience onshore is as enriching and enjoyable as your stay onboard.


Kids travel for free when sharing a cabin with 2 adults paying the full fare*.


Changing the way you book your cruise – Whoever books first pays less.


Costa Crociere S.p.A. is an Italian company operating in the Mediterranean, North Europe, the Caribbean, Central and South America, the Arabian Gulf and the Far East.

Top cruise company in Europe, where it is a leader in Italy, France, Spain and Switzerland, and in South America.

Most advanced fleet on the continent with 11 ships that have a capacity of approx. 20,200 guests

70 per cent of its employees are under 40 and they come from 80 different countries.

In 2006, the ship occupancy rate was 107 per cent, with a customer satisfaction level of 98 per cent.

RINA certified with the BEST 4 (Business Excellence Sustainable Task) compliance and is the first company in the world with Green Star notation for the whole fleet.

Why You Should Buy a Warranty for Your Laptop Pronto!

If you just bought a new laptop or are thinking of buying a new one, you should consider buying a laptop warranty as soon as you get your new machine. Manufacturer’s warranty may not be enough to cover your laptop needs and in the long run can cause you headaches too. To buy a warranty for your laptop in most cases is the wised thing to do.

Most manufacturers’ warranty generally covers defect parts and repair labors. Hardware problems like defective keyboards, monitor issues and modems will most likely not be covered. There are also some things that you might do that will void the warranty like opening the case of your laptop or even tearing the seal. So what can you do? Buying a warranty for your laptop is the answer.

Before getting a laptop warranty, consider the following things that will help you decide when you buy a warranty for your laptop:

Coverage – Always check the coverage of the warranty. Does it cover hardware? How about internal components? What about software problems? Will they be covered? This is very important since it is what you are paying for. Compare coverage among different warranty providers and pick the one that best suit your needs. You should also take note if coverage includes international warranty. If you are someone who travels a lot with your laptop, you should check if this is included. Check which items in your laptop is covered and what countries are included in your coverage. Take note of where they will repair your laptop. Can you bring them to the nearest service center in the country you’re in or do you need to bring it home and have it repaired there?

Price – The price of your laptop warranty must be worth your money. Do not buy a warranty for your laptop if you haven’t compared prices from different issuers. Compare coverage first then price – that is the rule in getting the best deal for your laptop.

Term – Getting a warranty with the longest term makes sense as long as you don’t need to pay additional fees. The most common term given for laptop warranties are only for a year or two. This is also important in your comparison process.

Service and Repair – Check how your issuer will do the repairs. Where will it take place? Are they going to use new or refurbished parts? How long will it take them to repair your laptop? These are some of the questions you have to ask when getting a laptop warranty.

While most people want protection for their laptop, they don’t research and end up frustrated with the laptop warranty they have. As with any other warranties, you need to read the fine prints and compare, compare, compare! Being persuaded by salesmen will get you nowhere. You must know what you are buying. Don’t just say yes to everything and buy the first warranty that they will offer you. You might regret it in the long run.