Take the Scenic Route

The Northern Cascades area is home to many scenic routes that reveal its extraordinary beauty. The vistas are unimaginable unless you are already a resident and then you know. But you never get used to the picturesque region or tire of looking at it while driving, picnicking or on hikes. It is all around and forms the Camping is the favorite local form of recreation. Tourists abound during the high season and are guided promptly to the right places and especially the overlooks. Some mighty good photography is taken in these parts.

Because I love my home state and want to save it from catastrophes like forest fires, I want to encourage campers from smoking on site. In the summer when is dry, it doesn’t take much to start a conflagration. You cannot be too cautious. You cannot assume that one cigarette is harmless. It takes one red butt to ignite tinder. My message is for visitors who must respect our land.

Smokers aren’t usually outdoor types in any case. But there are some who indulge while enjoying the fresh air and scenic sights. If you see a culprit tossing a cigarette out a car window, it should be reported fast. Naming and shaming on Facebook isn’t enough. He or she will no doubt do it again. The side of the road is a common place for fires to start. In our area, we have a kind of pact among residents to become a neighborhood patrol. After one serious fire that threatened some mountain cabins, we went “on watch.”

Smokers come in to town and it is easy to spot them. They have been on the road for some time and ask in the general store for an air purifier that is suitable for cigarette smoke. If we have them in stock as there is a lot of demand. The tourists prefer these devices to spray that doesn’t last. Imagine being in a car with a smoker for eight hours. The fabric of the seats just reeks. It adheres to the car ceiling and floor rugs. The car wash tries its best but is hard pressed to succeed. They end their task with a spritz of scent, but it can’t mask the deep odor.

I don’t smoke but I do use an air purifier for health reasons in my home. It does a good job of ridding the place of cooking and bathroom odors, not to mention the harmful pollutants and allergens that are common in summer when the windows are left open. I recommend these appliances and often give them to friends as practical gifts. The air is full of danger when it is warm. My air purifier is my best friend. I have stopped the sneezing, watery and itchy eyes, and irritated throat. Two units take care of the entire house. They are strategically placed and on 24/7. I pray that they won’t wear out.