There be (or were) mountains

26 Oct

Here in LA County most of our fires have been contained. The Santa Ana winds have died down. People are going back to their homes. But one huge problem still remains…

The air.

Four years ago the fires were really bad, so bad that the sky literally looked like a Hollywood Armageddon-like film. You could literally see the smoke hanging above the mountains. But at least you could still see the mountains.

Yesterday I looked out the window of our apartment. We usually have a really clear view of Mount Wilson, the observatory up top and the radio towers.

mountain there
Usual View

This was our view yesterday (and not much has changed today).

Mountainless view

Yep, our mountains have disappeared into the haze. There is so much particulate matter in the air, it reminds me of being in Bangkok or any other SE Asian city where pollution laws don’t really exist. In fact, on the weather website we usually check, instead of the normal designations of cloudy, partly cloudy, clear, or rain, the weather condition was listed as smoke.

So, here’s what I’ve had to do to avoid getting too much of this stuff into my lungs..

  • Close off the apartment. I figure the extra money we spend running the AC for part of the day will offset the co-pay and prescription costs (not to mention time waiting) to go to the doctor’s office to be treated for bronchitis.
  • Stay indoors as much as possible. It’s so hard for me to do, but it’s not just my health, but little one’s, that depends on it. A little stir craziness might inspire me to finish up a tutorial for my new job, some knitting, and heaven forbid, some cleaning.
  • Breathing only through my nose. Sounds pretty simple, but there it is. Four years ago I tried the surgical mask thing, and it didn’t work out so well for me. I figure that my nose will do it’s job provided it’s not made to work over-time.
  • And…my favorite…the neti pot.


    This is the best thing in the world! Just a half tsp. of salt, some warm distilled water and a sink, and you have the best nasal cleaner there is. It freaks Doug out a bit to watch me, but it really helps my nose.

  • For those of you suffering from allergies and bronchitis here in SoCal, I recommend you go to your local yoga studio, health food store, or Whole Foods and pick up one of these babies right away!

    Hopefully the air will clear up enough so that I (and all of us in SoCal) can enjoy the nice warm weather soon. And hopefully the fires will be put out so that the evacuees can return home.

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2 Responses to “There be (or were) mountains”

  1. phaskins October 28, 2007 at 1:49 am #

    I really need to stop complaining about the air here in Dallas. My heart goes out to you in Cali. But it would take a lot more than bad air to get me to clean my house! Six cats + three dogs + one messy husband = too much for me to even contemplate cleaning. I’m going back to my studio to create something. Take my advice, don’t even think about cleaning!!

  2. Rina October 28, 2007 at 2:41 am #

    As if LA air isn’t usually bad enough! But I’m glad to hear you’re safe.

    That neti pot is a trip! I watched the how-to video; I kind of freaked out myself. A friend of mine said that a swim in the ocean helps her fight off colds — must be the same principle.

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