During the early days of the pandemic, bicycling was one of the few activities in which one could engage wearing a mask.
Ironically, now that the authorities have declared an end to the COVID-19 emergency (although they still recommend vaccinations and the other precautions we had been taking), it may now be necessary to wear a mask while riding, running or engaging in any other outdoor activity.
The reason? Smoke from wildfires in northern Quebec and Ontario. (Another irony: South Park had the right idea--blame Canada!) As I rode to Flushing Meadow-Corona Park late this afternoon, an orange haze tinged the sky--several hours before sunset. The weather forecast promises more of the same for tomorrow, and possibly beyond.