We need a vacation
Is it brain fog, or do I just need a vacation?
I need a vacation. I also recently had Covid.
So now, I’m constantly asking myself: is it Long Covid, or do I just need a vacation?
Is it brain fog, or do I just need a vacation? Am I tired—exhausted, actually—or do I just need a nap on the beach? Am I anxious, or do I just need to swim in a lake? Am I depressed, or do I just need to hike all day and sleep on the ground for a week, preferably two?
I don’t really think I have Long Covid, and I certainly don’t want to make light of people who do have symptoms for weeks, months, or years after being infected with the virus. But I also feel a lot less well than—well, than I would like, and I want to be serious about that. But not too serious. Can it be a coincidence that a good chunk of the symptoms of Long Covid—anxiety, depression, brain fog, fatigue—might also be symptoms of simply existing in the world for the past two years. We all need a vacation!
Anyway, I will be leaving for vacation next week and I am very excited about it. A little concerned it won’t be long enough (and unfortunately a tent won’t be needed) but what can one do?
Hot off the presses
This week I edited a series of articles on extreme heat for the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. I contributed an article about how to avoid dying from the heat, which was super interesting to report and write.
Every piece was beautifully illustrated and designed by my talented colleagues, so the whole package looks really, really good. You can read my intro here, which has links to all the other articles in the series.
The reading list
This story does not let up, it just keeps getting more wild and more infuriating. Starts with how Boeing is using a conservation easement for hiking and nature preserves as a get-out-of-paying-for-environmental-remediation card at a site very near Los Angeles, then goes into how that’s happening elsewhere around the country, and how the EPA is actually encouraging this! There so much more, so read the whole thing. [Jaimi Dowdell and Andrea Januta for Reuters]
A glacier collapse killed 10 hikers in Italy, which Prime Minister Mario Draghi blamed on “the deterioration of the environment and the climate situation.” A harrowing, horrifying story about climate crisis, which will only become more common; experts say up to half of the glaciers in the Alps may disappear by 2050. “This tragedy makes us understand that climate change exists, but unfortunately it happened on a Sunday at 2 in the afternoon, the worst time and day possible,” Carlo Budel, who lives nearby, told the Times. “Because if not, if it happened during the week and wasn’t a tragedy, we wouldn’t even be talking about it.” [Jason Horowitz for the New York Times]
Some good news: Dolphins spotted in the East River! “The waters surrounding the city are cleaner now than at any time since the Civil War, said Ted Timbers, a spokesman for the NYC Department of Environmental Protection.” [Alyssa Lukpat in the Wall Street Journal]
Related: Sharks! [Jake Offenhartz in Gothamist]
“And that’s why you don’t fall into Mount Vesuvius.” [Kelly Conaboy in Gawker]
Longtime Pinch of Dirt reader (and my good friend) James Saraidaridis is one of the experts featured in this video on how to make air travel more sustainable:
Finally, my latest for Audubon: I interviewed the artist Jessica Maffia, an avid NYC patch-birder, about her recent piece, the Foraged Wood Thrush.
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Great roundup!! Thank you. And have an excellent vacation. Always necessary. 👏🏼