It started with a faint smell grass fire. I was heading to pick up a friend to run some errands. By the time we reached our first stop, the smell of smoke was unmistakable.
“There must be a grass fire near by,” I said as we entered the store. The smell lingered in my nose as I wandered down isles looking for a bath mat.
After going through the checkout, my friend went ahead of me back to the truck with her box of kitty litter. I followed her outside and found that the sky had gone from slightly hazy to seemingly overcast.
By the time we got to our next stop, I could taste the smoke. At the stop after that, my throat began to itch. When I finally turned my truck towards home, visibility had diminished.
I called my husband to see if he knew anything, and after listening to him click through a few things he found that there was a fire northeast of us, and a south blowing wind.
At home, some 23 kilometers from town, the smell of smoke was barely detectable. It pays to live in the boonies. By morning though the smoke had found it’s way to us as well.
Every time I went outside my eyes watered, my throat itched and then the smell permeated the house. It seemed to be everywhere.
In another place, the biggest platform in the world went down, interrupting communication and commerce worldwide. Beyond sending memes and updates, the ubiquitous place where we all dwell permeates so much more than the average user likely realizes. Like the smoke, it may be unclear where it originates, but it’s very clear that it is part of the very air we breath. Perhaps we should take heed of that.