by Wilfred Chan from Beijing
I’m tired of moping over my pollution-induced hacking cough. I refuse to hide inside my apartment any longer. I have six more weeks here, and damn it, I am going to have fun, I am going to explore this city, and I am going to do it without getting lung cancer.
Besides, what am I so worried about, anyway? This city is full of rainbows:
The good news is that I’ve found a way to save my trip, thanks to the Totobobo Mask I bought yesterday for 180 yuan. It has two filters that trap microns down to 0.3 microns in diameter, and filter out 92-96% of unhealthy particles in the air, including pollution and viruses. I can actually smell fresh air when I inhale. I can bike. I can walk outside to buy groceries. And I may look like a post-apocalyptic piglet when I’m wearing it, but I don’t care, because I feel like a functioning human being again!
So, I kind of apologize for the complaining last time. I may have to wear a freaky mask now, but I am going to give this city another chance.
Today, with mask firmly attached, I went out with Juanes for a 20-mile ride (complete route here), braving an AQI of 220* with very high PM2.5 in the air.
An air quality index of 220 is considered Moderately Polluted according to the Chinese Ministry of Environmental Protection, which I like to think of as humans should probably fucking stay indoors.
I will show you a picture of what my mask looked like AFTER the ride. The left side is a new set of filters. The right side is my mask, after three hours of biking.
Yep! I’m never taking this thing off again.