Outside at about 2pm. No shadows, no sun. Just orangey gray haze.

I’m OK here in Portland. OK being relative… Fires are burning in Oregon. In town we’re lucky to just get the smoke.

It all started a 100 years (or more) ago when we decided fires were bad. The Bear told everyone that only you can prevent wildfires. And we mostly did prevent them. Now when they come they’re too hot, too smoky, too much.

We were having our typical late summer weather- warm by day, cool at night, north-northwest wind that is perfect for sailing and pleasant for an evening stroll. I was at work on the computer, glancing out the window from time to time, watching the leaves wiggling in the wind, gradually coming to a stop. Suddenly the wind turned on like a faucet. Immediately, an east wind blasted through the tree tops at about 20 knots. Hot, dry wind blew in all day and all night.

And with it came the smoke.

Smoke pours in over downtown. Bye bye blue sky.

It got hard to exercise, breathe, or really do anything outside. Then the air got still. Real still. Dust settled on everything and it was just pea-soup fog all day. No real dawn, no day, no dusk. Just gray. It smells like the bottom of an ashtray, or a rug after a long party.

Three days later we’re still hiding inside our stinky house.

Grateful that we still have one.