A Cold Day and Burnin’ the Energy

It’s cold today.  As I alluded yesterday, we’re in the middle of a cold snap. 
I went to lunch with a friend today, and we never took off our winter coats.  Sitting there at lunch, it occurred to me that if we had been in the USA, the building would have been heated.  I had a mental flashback to dinner last Monday, also with some friends.  We went to a restaurant then, too.  We requested seats away from the window, but there was no heat in the building.  We left our coats and scarves on, and (just as today), we drank a lot of hot tea. 
In terms of "carbon footprint," don’t you think it’s more cost effective to wear coats and drink hot tea than it is to heat entire buildings? 
At our home, we have air conditioners / heaters that are not like any I’ve personally seen in the USA.  I guess it might be a dual stage heat pump, though I’m not really sure what that means.  We have one large unit on top of the roof.  Inside the house, each room has an individually controlled unit installed on the wall.  When we’re not in a room, we turn the heat or AC off.  In other words, we only heat or cool the rooms we’re actually in. 
I think this probably leaves a smaller carbon footprint than the typical heat pump in the USA which heats or cools the entire house. 
Our hot water heaters, likewise, are "point source" hot water heaters.  We have two, one for upstairs and one for downstairs, located right at one bathroom and then with a very short line running to the other bath or kitchen (as the case may be).  Each time we need hot water, we turn it on and set the thermostat at the temperature we want.  It turns itself off a certain number of minutes with no use. 
Unlike most Chinese houses, we have a bathtub.  As a result, we take baths, especially when it’s cold like this.  Nothing like a hot soak!  As a result, however, our energy bill is really high.  Most people right now in Guangzhou are bundling up in two or three layers of clothes, along with hats, scarves, and gloves. 
Sophie last night sent me a message that asked if I were keeping warm.  It prompted me to wonder, is she keeping warm?  Because when you don’t have heat or very much hot water, once you get cold it’s hard to get warmed back up. 
Neet calories and hot tea, lots of it!  I don’t need the calories, but thank goodness the tea is so good!   

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