I’m not usually a pessimist, but until you’re dead, things can always get worse. And things did get worse this weekend. You might think I’m referencing the Covid-19 spike here in Texas, but no, that was true last week. This weekend, the Saharan sands blew in from North Africa.
You can actually see the massive plume of sand extending westward from North Africa toward the Gulf of Mexico in this photo below, as it sails in the Sahara air layer at an altitude of twenty thousand feet.
Incidentally, mask wearing was much more prevalent this weekend on my running trail. Few runners, but many walkers and bikers. I can’t say if it was due to the Covid-19 spike, or the dirty air. Guessing the latter.
The dirty air wasn’t good for running. I struggled Friday and Saturday. I had one of my best runs in a long time today though, despite the dust. A storm front was blowing in and the strong breeze and heavy clouds helped keep my body temperature down. It felt really good running the fast pace.
I could have run farther today, which would have also been nice, but I limited my exposure to the dust by keeping my run under six miles. If it’s not the heat, it’s the air quality. These masks and bandanas are proving handy.
I thought the opaque air was the icing on the dystopian cake–now we truly have entered the post-apocalyptic world Hollywood has been warning us about for years. It looked like “The Road” out there. Fit perfectly with the general mood we’re fighting now. But then I woke up with no power (so no coffee) to compliment the dark skies, and I knew I had underestimated just how bad things are going to get. My advice is the same as Hunter Thompson’s: keep running, because pretty soon the ability to run farther and faster than your neighbors might be the key to survival.
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Ed Mahoney said:
No coffee? Good God, hard to imagine things could get any worse than that.
Running with a mask does have some other advantages.
I don’t think we had the Sahara sand in New England.
There are many construction sites in the Great Boston Area. When I run by there is often dust or dirt in the air. Yesterday I ran by a project at a park and they were sifting dirt by the ton!
One afternoon the sun was low in the sky and I could see all of the pollen and dust in the air. I was glad to be wearing a mask.
One problem is that when a mask gets wet from sweat, it is very difficult to breathe through.
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