The haze has returned, an inconsistent blight upon the city. I check aqicn.org compulsively, obsessing over whether the PM2.5 count is above or below 100 for the past hour, either locking the windows shut against the pollution or opening everything up to let “clean” (below 100) air into the flat. The children, unused to being confined to quarters, are moody and uncooperative. At least as the sun sets, the extra particulates in the air provide a calming shade of blue.
This is the third haze that I remember, and I’m not getting much better at it. In 2013 there was one awful week shortly before La Serpiente was born, where you couldn’t see across the street. In 2015 we had the endless smog until the end of October, which made me think there’d be nothing left to burn this year. But alas, there’s a never ending supply of palm plantations that need to be immolated. And so it goes.
My mood is worsened by not recovering from sports day. My abdominal muscles are sore to the touch, my neck is still kinked from being body checked during captain’s ball, and I assume sitting out in the haze for eight hours was the cause of my crippling chest pains at 3 this morning. At least I was sensible enough to only drink one coffee today. I slept, I think, and didn’t do much apart from slink around the apartment, occasional accomplice in La Serpiente’s jigsaw puzzles. Tomorrow I’m back to work, and the thought of air conditioning greatly excites me. Oh, the joy of deracination.