Firefighters, Fire, Flames, Outside

I missed two days of work in two weeks because of fires. Sat in hours of traffic.

Mind you, we were fortunate to not be directly affected. Yet freeway closures and being downwind of smoke, plus school closures and the officials urging everyone to stay home if possible, leave the roads to fire crews, all that kept me home.   

I’m not complaining. We were mildly inconvenienced, while some people lost everything.

Every year, same story.

Correction, every year is getting worse.

I’ve lived in California for twenty-seven years, the last fifteen in the same valley, and don’t remember anything this big. Fire after fire after fire. Then more fires.  

We can go on debating cause and remedy; but let’s face it, things are changing.

Can we agree to that without controversy?  Things are changing, and not for the better.

As one social-media friend put it, our planet is sick and showing terrible symptoms.

Blue, Watercolor, Watercolour, Painting

I love my California.

The state took me in as one of its own twenty-seven years back. The mild weather, opportunities, diversity, and so on, agreed with me like ice cream on warm apple pie or tomato juice and vodka. Particularly after having lived in severely cold climate and near-zero opportunity zone.

My heart belongs here. Even when I visit family in Europe. Even after I fall back into European customs, like seeing old places, speaking the old language with friends and family. There is a disconnect in that once familiar activity.

I feel more Californian than anything else.

Any disaster, anywhere in the world, breaks my heart. Seeing it up close, on such a large scale, being in the middle of it, surrounded by it, suffocated by it … yeah, it’s challenging to say the least.

Which makes wanting to see the treating of symptoms my social-media friend mentioned all the more important.

It’s what we do for love, isn’t it? Want to see the ill get treatment. Get well. For them and for us. 

Image credit: Pixabay

16 responses to “Fires

  1. Sadly, the world’s climate is changing, IF our politicians would accept that fact, maybe they would do something effective to help the world. Watching California burn up is heart-breaking. I have many friends down there. I pray for all of them. You and your family take care too!! Stay safe!

  2. Hi Sylvia – take care … and I just hope something can be done to keep the fires under control. We are changing the ways of the world … it would be good if we could be more gentle and understanding … and help the world … all the best – Hilary

  3. ‘Get well. For them and for us’. Wise words Sylvia, a few words that pack a punch. In the meantime, am following these dreadful fires with dread and fascination. I also have a few friends in the area. Here in SA we know only too well how winds whip into a fury and flames fly even higher. Keep well, keep safe.

  4. With all our friends in California,we are worried for y’all. There were ways to at least reduce the problems with fires, but from where I sit, the state has sat on its hands.

    • Thank Noelle. In my area, officials with mandate from the state often come checking for defensible space around property and “hardening” homes to make them fire resistant. California law requires creating buffers by clearing out trees, brush and grass within 100 feet around homes in wildfire-affected areas. Billions are spent preventing and fighting fires. I’d agree with the fact that constantly building in areas that should not be inhabited by humans is a problem. I’d be down with doing something about population control.

      • Our friend up in the NC mountains have to clear around their house, too! I think clearing of dead undergrowth and spending some money on refurbishing the electrical lines nad poles would help.

      • I agree wholeheartedly with the power line improvement. PG&E, for one, a publicly trade company, is directly responsible. Problem with monopoly. They are too big to care. State should get involved there for sure.

  5. Thinking of you. Praying for rain, for healing, for help.

  6. I find it heartbreaking, too. What are we doing? Correction: we as individuals are aware, we’re trying to change our habits. But our elected officials, corporations? They who could enact meaningful changes – what are they doing?

    • They don’t do much on the large scale. We try to fight a big fight against plastic, push for solar and wind. Clean vehicle incentives. I don’t mind paying for that. Rather have clean air, no plastic particles in our bloodstream. Thank you for weighing in, Martha.

  7. Some of my friends in California had to be evacuated, and others lost power. We need to wake up before we render the planet uninhabitable. We just need to go for a ‘less is more’ lifestyle.

  8. Hi Silvia,

    Thank you for your lovely postings.

    Melbourne, Australia


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