Do watch this!
He's really caught how we're feeling, what we're all talking about. This place has never been more beautiful to me (and it's always been the most beautiful place on earth!). I was an ex-pat for 10 years, and it is so very hard to be an Australian not
Damian, I'm very distressed by your distress. I know, I know. We had the smoke in Tassie this time last year when the southwest wilderness was burning across the river from us. Smoke so thick for a fortnight that on some days you couldn't see your hand at the end of your outstretched arm. The last few days have been crystal clear and glorious here, but today the smoke haze is back. I suspect this pattern will go on for all of summer.
Melbourne, dear Melbourne, sounds in bad shape. The smoke is so unhealthy. After our experience last year, we bought an air conditioner, not for temperature regulation, but to help clean the air inside the house. I'm not an air conditioner kind of person. At all. But I can't be caught in that kind of smoke again. It's the worst I've ever felt, and I can't bear thinking of all the mainlanders breathing it right now. It creates a kind of depression over everyone, like a grey blanket over the spirit. It feels alien. Everything feels alien. I'm waiting to see how they're going to handle the Australian Open.
Yes, the bush has always burned. I nearly died, with my sister, in the great bushfire of 1967 when the whole of Tasmania burned -- 62 dead, 7000 homeless. And we lost a place near Marysville on Black Saturday. Terrifying. But it's the sheer size and tenacity of this one that makes it different. And just think -- our hottest times are usually Feb. March, and often right up to the Easter break!
Stay inside, Damian. Spend time in air-conditioned spaces. I can't believe that I, an air-conditioning despiser, am actually writing those words.