Living: Come On In, The Water's Fine!

Americans try new ways to make a splash and keep cool

Alexander the Great, while laying siege to ancient cities, is said to have filled 30 trenches with snow and covered them with branches in order to provide a refreshing oasis for his ladies. No less resourceful was Emperor Nero, who reputedly dispatched runners up into the mountains to fetch ice, which he flavored with fruits and honey to make the original snow cone. And it is likely that Marco Polo, during his travels in the Far East, discovered sherbet.

For even the most sweet-tempered soul, August is a test of patience and ingenuity, when office workers lunch by a fountain and...

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