i woke up choking on smoky air, not quite the barbecue flavour yet not quite ringing the fire alarm. i looked out of the window and the sky was grey, no puffy clouds nor clear blue tint. another kind of alarm rang in favour.
i quickly shut all the windows and doors at home and switched on the air purifier. it will take a while before the air is sterile again, but it could only filter the air in my bedroom. i did not even feel like eating because having a meal at the dining table meant breathing in smelly air.
it started a few days ago - when i first woke up with sore throat, thinking i was not drinking enough water. the following day, the familiar daily air was replaced by another familiar occasional air. when it got worse yesterday, it struck me - a neighbouring souvenir has finally arrived.
the soft hum churning out of the little grey device on the floor was doing its job. soon the air i breathe in my room will be sterile, good riddance to smoky air... but i would still smell a bit of burnt flavour because of the bits stuck in my nostrils. the stinging smell gave me headache eventually.
news feed on the laptop screen began to bombard me with complaints of the air quality, faces in masks, more photos of the grey sky, and the occasional smarty-pants who goes around educating the difference between API and PSI. does it matter?
all i care is that i cannot wash my lolita clothes and put them out to dry without unwanted fragrance. i cannot walk out of my bedroom without needing to wear a mask. i cannot even take off the mask when i am driving because the smell seeps in through the air-con vents.
the return of the hazy summer is just a reminder of how much we care about our selves over the environment. if farmers did not rid of plantation waste cheaply, there would be no spike in sales of masks or air purifiers, staple food prices will go up, and it would put pro-environment NGOs out of job. people simply prefer the hassle of getting the cure, rather than to prevent the hassle of getting the cure.