Ah, it’s that glorious time of year–the flowers bloom, trees leaf out, and the hillsides are awash in fresh green grass. All of these chamber of commerce postcard moments brought out the doomsday prepper in me over the past few weeks. They saw fresh flowers–I saw pollen. Townsfolk posted Facebook photos of newly leafed trees–I saw pollen. You get the picture?
Allergy season around this little stretch of Northern California is straight from a dystopian sci-fi flick. Your car is covered with a fine yellow powder. You can see the stuff blowing in the wind like some sort of radiological fallout particles. Your pets bring the stuff in and you leave yellow footprints in the house if you dare venture out into the contaminated world. Yes it is that bad.
The pollen levels over the past two weeks were so bad that it turned me into a shut in. I couldn’t venture outside for more than a few minutes without a bout of Tourette’s like full-body convulsive sneezes. I could only watch the world go by from the window of my office with more than a hint of jealousy.
Still, the pollen found a way in. Afrin, Musinex, Singlular, and a handful of other sprays, pills and notions came to the rescue. Still, I bumped around the house feeling like my head was full of cotton. Oh, saline rinses are a nice way of say waterboarding. I’d confess to being on a grassy knoll in Dallas in the 1960’s watching a presidential motorcade, during a nettiepot session. The days when you could breathe through your nose seemed so long ago…
The one benefit of being an allergy season bunker dweller was that I had no excuse to put off working on the latest manuscript. It was an incredibly productive few weeks. I finished edits and revisions on a book and got it shipped off to my agent. I’m crushing out new pages on another project, too. Hopefully, it won’t read like the drug induced rantings of madman. Although Hunter S. Thompson did decently with Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.
In every sci-fi-fi dystopian film, there is that one scene where the people come back out of the bunker after the virus, or radiation, or zombie apocalypse has passed. That moment is the “we will survive” point in the story. There’s usually a reverent happiness and a moment of prayer and reflection. Yesterday was that day. Morning thunderstorms knocked down the pollen and made the air breathable once more. Birds sang, rainbows appeared, and all was right in the world.
A prayer was recited, from the ancient book of Allergy Suffering:
Our Pharmacy Counter which art in heaven,
Hallowed be thy over the counter offerings,
Thy Afrin and Sudafed come,
Thy dosage be done,
Our sinuses and noses are as it is in winter,