And I mean REALLY hot, to the point where you cannot have it on your lap for anything more than a few minutes? Well if so, then it appears to be the norm.
At John’s suggestion I checked in with Apple techs in three different stores, in three different cities in the last couple of weeks and they all said it was ‘normal’ for my machine (15”). They also said that this is the primary reason the Macbooks are NOT referred to by Apple as ‘Laptops’, but rather carry the ‘Notebook’ moniker.
So now you know – it’s normal and there’s no need to bug John or the IT help desk with questions about temperature!