Yesterday marked the lifting of all COVID-19 pandemic-related restrictions, here in Saskatchewan. It’s been an interesting run of things, considering that even after two years of wearing a mask, I still occasionally forget to slip one on. Last weekend, Nathan and I went shopping at Walmart and I agreed to get him a happy meal since the location had a McDonald’s. Ironically, he had just received his second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, so I agreed to reward him with a purchased lunch since I was going to make him sit through doing groceries.
We walked in and I had ordered his food and waited for it, for almost ten minutes. We got his happy meal and I loaded him into the cart so he could eat comfortably. It wasn’t until we walked into the store proper that I realized my face was bare! I was wondering why some people were giving me sideways glances. I had my mask on me, of course. I’m usually in the habit of getting as much fresh air in my lungs as I can before slipping on a mask. In this case, I must have simply forgotten.
The wearing of a mask has long been a debated restriction over the past two years. I write about it now because it was my most disliked. I hate wearing a face mask. I honestly don’t know how medical professionals do it. My hat’s off to them. Considering I’ve found myself having to train and do karate with a face mask, I’m well aware that once the skin gets a bit sweaty, that’s all she wrote! The mask basically sticks against my face like someone trying to choke me with a plastic bag. Not least of which is the fact that wearing a mask makes it difficult for me to wear my glasses. Anyone who wears glasses will totally understand the struggle. I know, I know… First world problems.
The thing is, a face mask will block some particles from spreading. This makes logical sense, since surgical staff wear them to prevent the spread of germs during medical procedures and surgeries. The logical part of my brain understands this. The “semi-logical” part of my brain suggests that it isn’t as overall effective as the professionals may think it is. When was the last time you walked past someone while wearing a face mask and were able to smell their cologne or perfume? Or caught a smell of a local restaurant wafting in your direction through the mask?
This would seem to suggest to me that particles are making their way into my nose, regardless of the mask. This wold SEEM to suggest that if COVID-19 particles are being blown in my direction, I could potentially be breathing them despite having a plate of cotton armour across my face. Doesn’t that make sense? On the flip side, smelling particles known as “odorants” and having active virus particles make their way into your body may be two different things. I don’t know, I’m not a doctor. This post is purely speculative and simply an example of me thinking out loud.
Some believe the lifting of COVID-19n restrictions is too early. Maybe it is. Some believe that we all need to collectively reopen the world and let nature take its course in order to move on with life. Perhaps we will. In the meantime, it will be nice when the impulse to slap on a mask has passed, although I must confess that it’s my intention to continue to carry one with me in my pocket for some time to come. The world isn’t done with this bullshit, yet. Food for thought…☯️