Moving into the Smokey Headache Zone (Ulog no. 8)

in ulog •  5 months ago

Sometimes life works with you, sometimes not so much.

Today was a "not so much" sort of day. The photo below was taken at a little before 11:00am on a "clear and sunny" day... that brown hazy gook? That's smoke from forest fires, both here in Washington state, as well as in Canada. 

11:00am, under "clear" skies on a "sunny" day

That's about the clearest it got today... by mid afternoon, it looked more like sunset and the sun was more like a blood red orb, overhead. 

I just hope it's a little better tomorrow

Our lungs aren't really meant to breathe this crap. Aside from visibility having dropped to less than 1/4 mile now, I feel like I am "just about to come down with the flu" and have been feeling that way for about 48 hours now. Itchy eyes, rough raspy throat, corners of my eyes watering slightly. I also feel like someone punched a railway spike into my head, immediately above my left eye.

Our Air Quality Index this afternoon was 159. Not good. A blend of smoke and tiny airborne particulate in the form of wood ash.

What we need around here is a steady rain for about 48 hours. Unfortunately, none of that in the forecast...

I Had a Plan. Honestly.

This morning I had plans to have (create) a busy week. I really wanted to jump start my creativity... in part inspired by @steempowerpics' post about starting a "3-a-day challenge" for a week.

Hoping for some of this. Unfortunately, NOT in the forecast...

But as the day wore on and my head felt more and more congested... I decided that "this is not the time." But it's something I definitely want to take up later. When the air has cleared a little.

Funny just how much this stuff actually affects us.

Reminds me of the rather sad story of my friend Dohn who was driving through a brush/forest fire area on his way from Texas to Florida, and the smoke was rather thick, like this. Except... where he was in Louisiana there was a lot of poison oak and poison ivy getting burned up; enough that the inside of his lungs — quite literally — got "burned" by the toxic residue and he ended up spending three days in an ER in Tallahassee breathing pure oxygen from a respirator.

Fortunately, this smoke is cleaner.

Anyway, apologize for this rather "wimpy" post... but my brain is just not 100% there, at the moment.

Comments always welcome, and invited!

Animated banner created by @zord189

(As usual, all text and images by the author, unless otherwise credited. This is original content, created expressly for Steemit)
Created at 180820 23:50 PDT

Authors get paid when people like you upvote their post.
If you enjoyed what you read here, create your account today and start earning FREE STEEM!
Sort Order:  

I was just responding to your comment on my post from a few days ago and wondered if you'd posted about the smoke, so I came over "here" to find out. It's crazy isn't it?! Both my sons are in Vancouver, BC, and say it's been bad. My friend is in northern BC and showed me photos of 9am, but it looked like it was 9pm!

Gotta get back to my own post/comments now. haha no wonder it takes me days to reply sometimes ... I'm like a crow to shiny objects around here, or better yet, a golden retriever puppy in a field full of butterflies :)


It's just really oppressive and unpleasant @lynncoyle1... and part of what makes it worse is that it has been super still; not even a hint of a breeze to stir this stuff around till finally we saw a few leaves move this morning, and an onshore flow from the Pacific has started.

Even though there's clean ocean air on the way, it's still going to take till around 4:00-6:00pm Thursday for the the breeze to push the smoke plumes back east.

The last two days have been particularly unpleasant; at 11:00am you can SEE the sun almost directly overhead; by about 4:30 what's basically a deep red disc slowly fades into the brown murk and it feels like "dusk" for the next 4-5 hours.

You know, I think those of us who are really active in the community just take a while to get all our "rounds" taken care of!


That's exactly what I've heard from my kids and friends back home. I'm not sure of the accuracy here, but someone forwarded this to me: Map of Fires in BC

A picture really does say 1000 words.

Shit man! I think I can understand it a bit.

I have breathed in the smoke from the smoke grenade gas of the riot police a couple of times. First time I was kid and in a school bus. After half an hour I wanted to puke my guts out and probably pass out after that.

Second time around I was an adult and just wanted to hit somebody in frustration of not having enough air. Smoke is a bitch to deal with (especially the chemical one)

Thankfully I have never been in situation where smoke was around 24X7. I hope that it clears up quickly...


That must have been a really nasty experience @hashcash; I can't even imagine. I worked in a factory a long time ago, and once in a while we'd have small contained chemical fires (mostly plastics and polymers), and that was nasty enough!

24/7 smoke is very different; it smells slightly, your eyes perpetually burn and itch, you have a constant slight headache and you feel like you're coming down with the flu. And everyone seems irritable as hell.

Wind direction has changed, with a bit of luck we'll have better air by Thursday evening.

Feel you here man... The smoke is pretty bad down here in Oly as well. The amount of fires is ridiculous. However, we all know the rain will come someday here in the PNW :P Really thankful to be in a safe place right now.


We still have "air quality warnings" here; even though the wind direction has now changed to onshore from the Pacific, there's still a huge plume of smoke that has to be pushed out of the way, and that'll take till Thursday afternoon... or so "they" say.

At least you managed to get a post out at all! I’ve been sick myself for the past day, and I didn’t feel like doing a thing.

I know that railway spike feeling well - right above the eye is where I also get headaches from time to time. Hope you get to feeling better soon! Do you think wearing a HEPA mask would help?


I kinda made a deal with myself that I was going to put at least SOMEthing out there.

In general, I have just avoided being outside more than just to let the dog go out for a whizz — we've taking to spending most of our time in our downstairs media room where there are no opening windows and we have a dehumidifyer with a HEPA filter circulating the air... our attempt at a "clean room." It's better than nothing.

Still, hopeful for some "natural relief" by late tomorrow (Thursday PM) when cleaner air from over the Pacific finally should push the smoke plumes further to the east.

OMG. That's terrible @denmarkguy. I've been reading similar posts from @keithboone who is traveling across Canada on holiday.

I hope it clears up for both of you soon 😊


Yeah, it's really bad across Canada @gillianpearce; seems almost everything is on fire up there. We have one major fire within about 30-40 miles of us, all the rest of Washington state fires are east of the Cascades, but there's 150,000 acres ablaze over there. What we need is a good soaking RAIN, but that doesn't seem to be in the cards at the moment.

At least our wind direction changed overnight and there's hope for some fresher air by tomorrow evening.

ye here in Vancouver is also bad hope its better to day. I miss the mountains
and a total understand on the movement. its hard to go outside when u get eh fear of being sick or feel the smoke


Hey @norwegianbikeman! Both my sons are in Vancouver and have said the same. Seems to get worse each summer.


Hope it clears out for you guys soon, as well. I know BC is having one of its worst years for wildfires, even after 2017 was "one of the worst years for wildfires."

We are SO proud to have you as a member of our
FANTABULOUS @steemitbloggers family!
uvoted and resteemed!

❤ MWAH!!! ❤

interested in joining the Steemit Bloggers Community?


Appreciate the support, as always... great community!