Thebastidge: Got the black lung, pop. {weak cough}
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    ********************Southwest Washington Surplus, your prepping supply store********************

    Saturday, April 19, 2008

    Got the black lung, pop. {weak cough}

    It's been dust storms for the last 3 days. Yesterday morning dawned bright and blue (I was up unfortunately early) but then the clouds started rolling in mid-morning. Dust clouds, that is. The last few afternoons have been so filthy that visibility was down to about 150 meters. Less at times.

    This of course, is in the middle of the IZ, where most everything is paved over- gotta be hell out in the open. When I was traveling around more in late '06, we spent a few weeks at various places that could be considered 'open desert'.

    You know that scene in The Mummy where the wall of sand comes on with the face in it? Desert sandstorms in Iraq aren't quite that cool, but nearly as impressive.

    The dust literally looks like a mountain range on the horizon, where no mountains stood before. Then it rolls towards you in a very ominous dark cloud, with extravagant bolts of lightning flashing in it. The dust provides a constantly shifting path and generates so much static that it's extremely impressive when large sheets and balls and stabs of lightning start seemingly nowhere and everywhere and vanish into the same places. Then the front of it hits and while it doesn't exactly scour the flesh from your bones, it is quite painful on the more sensitive parts of your exposed skin. Breathing is a chore, and it can give some hitches in your breath for a day or two afterwards, not to mention crusty eyes, exotic nose boulders and lots of interesting stuff coughed seemingly out of the bottom of your lungs.

    Everybody not worried about their dignity wears dust masks. Sometimes it seems like a waste of time, and kind of a pansy move, then when you've been breathing the crap for a day and realize how much your lung capacity has diminished, you think, "Why didn't I do that?!? Stupid!"


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