The end of a work day. “Fire season” is upon us, on the west coast (and, um, why is that a thing, ffs?). The sky is a sick orange, has been for a couple days, now. The other-worldly impression already seems to extend itself in my sense of scale, such that it feels, subjectively, like… normal. It isn’t. Not at all.

…There’s quite a lot in life that seems to work that way; the grotesquely abnormal, over time, becoming almost routine, and definitely expected… I try not to allow myself to forget bluer skies.

I take a breath. Today I’m exceedingly grateful for air. Right now it’s tainted with the smell of smoke, and particles of ash that continue to fall from the summer’s wildfires. My throat is sore, and my voice is hoarse, but I feel safe at home, so far. I embrace the gratitude, and let go of the complaints. I’ve got much to be grateful for…

…And I’ve got time to begin again.