It is HOT and HUMID! I don't want to gross you out too much but you can't believe the mold that is growing on everything. I encounter this every year when I come back from the States but I thought it was the result of a month of a closed up house and not much cleaning going on from Tetsu. Not so! Mold grows in barely no time at all and though I wipe things, less than a week later there is a white-green fuzz on everything. I can understand food, but my leather belt and shoes? Wooden furniture and paneled walls? Canvas camera case? Believe me, you don't want to see it all!
I try to avoid using the air-conditioner until just before Tetsu comes home but the electric fan goes full blast and my handheld fans come in handy. Many years ago some friends gave me some very nice expensive fans called Uchiwa. These are one piece rounded fans and they are carried around during festivals and used by people working outdoors. We always have a couple of plastic ones around and when we barbecued out in the yard (when the kids were little) uchiwa came in handy for fanning the fire. Women will also use them to fan the rice when making sushi or other dishes that need to be cooled quickly.
My very nice uchiwa are made from a thin bamboo stalk that has been split evenly over 60 times and then the spokes have been carefully arranged to allow fabric and paper application to both sides. The workmanship in these fans is just beautiful though very easily overlooked when one is just grabbing it in order to find relief from the heat.
The other fan I use is called a Sensu and it is a traditional folding fan. You can find these everywhere in the department stores (even in the One Dollar shops!) and they are covered with paper or fabric depending on the price. Women especially tend to carry around sensu and they often come with a cloth fan holder. My sensu is made of sandalwood and it may even be Chinese, I'm not sure exactly. Instead of being covered, each slat has been carved (or press cut) and it is very attractive when spread out. It also had a wonderful sandalwood fragrance that has since died away but I occasionally put a drop of aroma oil on it and whenever I fan myself I'm enveloped in fragrance. Anything to forget the heat!