Wood Smoke Stories

Never imagined city air could be cleaner

I live in a rural town in New Jersey and have been enjoying the country life for a little over a year. I chose this town because it’s about a 45 minute commute from NYC (where I work). Everything was great until the neighbor moved in.

His wood stove burns day and night and a heavy cloud of smoke surrounds my home. It’s worse on nights when it’s cold and there is no breeze because the smoke just sits there.

At first glance it looks like a heavy fog surrounding the house, but it is pure smoke. This “neighbor” uses soaking wet wood. I know this for a fact because it is piled outside his home and barely covered with a tarp.

I have two little dogs and I dread taking them outside for breaks because we come back in reeking of smoke and the smoke fills the house quickly when I open the door. My asthma has become worse and my inhalers are not helping. I spend all day and night wheezing and coughing. Once my lease ends I am leaving. If this is what country living is like, I’ll take the city thank you very much. It’s going to cost more, but at this point it will be worth it. I never imagined city air could be cleaner than what I’m breathing now.

D.
Smoke-filled air in Phoenix
Driven from a Hampshire market town
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