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Monday, 16 January 2017

Island perspective

Born and raised in and around St. John's, Newfoundland, I've seen the fog moving in from the Grand Banks over the coastline. That fog can be so thick, it's as if it obscures everything but the tip of your nose.

When I first saw the recent time lapse video of the smog advancing over Beijing, it reminded me of the fog of home. However, that wall of white wasn't as benign as fog. This smog is deadly in its effect on the millions of people in that city. It is easy to take our clean air for granted.


One day recently as I drove to the store in Summerside, Prince Edward Island, the sun was out and the sky was clear. From the car it looked like a lovely winter day, but the appearance belied the reality. The temperature was -16 C and the high wind made it feel like -27 C, (3,-17 F). At ground level, the wind gusts blew the snow around causing drifting in open areas.  The walk from the car to the store became a run.

On the way out of the store, I stood with two other seniors, a husband and wife, as the sliding doors opened to the wind. We were blown back by the gust coming into the lobby. The man said, "That's a fresh breeze." I laughed at his reframe of the bitterly cold wind.  

But, you know, it was.

28 comments:

  1. My Rare One went to China in 2015 and not only was the smog appalling in Beijing, it blanketed the Great Wall of China too. Scary stuff.

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    1. The Chinese people are suffering from their environmental conditions. No wonder they wear masks, Debra.

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  2. Maybe this bitter cold makes your summers look so beautiful and lush! Sometimes I will imagine (if the snow is melted at least), when I am in the car, that it is spring! The car gets so warm by the sun even in the cold. Andrea

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    1. The sun is getting some strength already! It can't return soon enough for me!

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  3. Many times from my living room chair looking outside a winter day looks pleasant, especially if the sun is shining. Once I step out the door, the wind that seems to always be blowing these days and is sharp makes me want to retreat to my chair. A chuckle at the comment the fellow made of the wind that blasted all of you.

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    1. He was so nonchalant about it, Judith! Priceless!

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  4. Blow blow you north winds. Warmer around here, not that I've been out lately.

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    1. You need to stay in and nurse yourself back to health, SS.

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  5. I've read the phrase often, never knew it's real meaning. The fog video is frightening.

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    1. That smog is scary, Joanne. Glad I don't live in that stuff!

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  6. Like the smogs we used to get in London when I was a child, fortunately they've cleaned things up now though I still prefer the countryside.

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    1. Me too, John. The cities are OK to visit.

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  7. That smog. Shudder. Himself was lucky while he was in China.
    We call those 'fresh breezes' lazy. They would rather go through you than round you.

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    1. I love Aussie terminology. A lazy breeze is a great description, EC.

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  8. A few years back I seen a month of Beijing in the winter. Most days we couldn't see across the street. It's awful there in the winter. Laughed at the idea of a "fresh breeze" "-)

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    1. I feel for the Chinese people living with that air quality, Jan.

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  9. The video showing the smog in China is very scary. Whau!! I don't really like fog because it's hard to drive when it's too thick. Marie, thank you for your visits and kind comments!! I pray for a blessed week for you.

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    1. I was surprised at the small amount of fog we have on this island, compared to Newfoundland, Angela. I dislike fog but it's in my soul. Besides, it's way ahead of smog.

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  10. The China smog was a scary thing to see, thank goodness we don't have to live in that. I remember hearing about the smog in London in the 1940s and 50s, but as I lived in the country then, I didn't experience it. We should take more care of our world.

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    1. The series, The Crown, has an episode about Churchill and his reaction to the smog in the UK. It's a great series, Shammickite.

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    2. Yes I saw that episode last week, it's a very good series.

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    3. I can't wait for season 2. The sets, clothes and acting are great!

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  11. China is planning to spend many billions of $ on clean energy in the next 10 years. For their sakes and ours, I hope they do it, and I hope it has an impact.

    Hope you are well. I am beginning to get back on board.

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  12. Glad to hear you are feeling a bit better.

    We will be under water if China does not follow through, AC.

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  13. I have just finished reading Captains Courageous by Rudyard Kipling. It included many descriptions about the Grand Banks and the fog. Sarah x

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    1. That fog is as thick as pea soup in eastern Newfoundland, Sarah. It was a way of life. PEI has little fog in comparison!

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  14. though in southern ares of our country we have wind but quite less than in summers ,
    in summers we get huge windy stormy winds with dust and no [mostly] rain that makes everything so dusty and cleaning becomes a main problem in those days of summer

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  15. The dust must be bad for peoples' health too, Baili.

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