As I've said here before, thankfully pretty much everyone in Dubai speaks English, so being native English speakers from the United States we've been spared the difficulty (or some might say enjoyment) of daily translation.

However, being from the United States we've never have day-to-day contact with metric units, unlike the rest of the world. So we do have to convert distances, weights and temperatures all of the time.

Now, growing up after Jimmy Carter's 1970s push at metrication, but amidst Ronald Reagan dissolved the U.S. Metric Board in the early 1980s, I had a marginal working knowledge of the metric system before coming over here. And luckily the metric world is pretty basic, so that hasn't been too difficult to work with. Kilo-, centi-, mili- and we're done.

But Celsius to Fahrenheit still has me confused.

The one hint I have is this poem. I don't recall learning it in school per se, more likely I picked it up from my science teacher father. (Who, granted, was my eighth grade science teacher). I just googled it, and apparently it was written by a Boston University School of Education professor Carole Greenes:

    30° is hot,
    20° is pleasing,
    10° is not,
    0° is freezing.

So I've converted it out further:

    30 degrees C is 86 degrees F
    20 degrees C is 68 degrees F
    10 degrees C is 50 degrees F
    0 degrees C is 32 degrees F.

Unfortunately for us right now it's about 43 degrees Celsius (about 109 Fahrenheit). Kind of off Professor Greenes' scale ...
posted by Josh @ 12:53 PM  

Josh and Liz are two American kids who got married in August. Liz has lived in Dubai since 2003, Josh since August of 2006.

Follow along in the culture shock of being recently married and (for Josh, at least) recently transplanted to Dubai.

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