October 25, 2007
Sunset at the beach with fire and smoke. October 2007.
Several people out of my area read my blog. One asked me if I was in San Diego….I am, and it is a city with two major fires both pushed seaward by strong Santa Ana winds. These are the hot dry winds that blow toward the coast from the desert. They fan the fires sending sparks far and wide into the dry, many-year, unburned chaparral starting other fires. There are a number of smaller fires, one in Fallbrook and one on the Camp Pendleton Base, that are also very destructive.
We have had explosive growth in the past here out into the mountains and hills surrounding the historic heart of the city. Many of these outlying communities have either burned or been threatened. Their residents have been evacuated back toward the beach with their animals….many of which are large animals. There are over a hundred horses, for instance, on an island in the resort area of Mission Bay.
Today the winds have changed. There’s a low pressure front coming down the coast from the north and pushing the high that spawns the Santa Ana inland over the Four Corners. Slowly the people are allowed back into their homes…..some to find devastation, some to find their homes whole and untouched. The biggest worry now is that the fires will move back into previously unburned areas.
The marina’s are crowded with live-aboards. Parking lots everywhere are jammed with RV’s, SUV’s, and trucks that show signs of hastily packed belongings. Even the main roads of our condo complex have refugees parked in rows far from their homes. Another San Diego blogger, up in Clairemont, has family, friends, and critters too, packed into every corner.
“I’m cooking up a big pot of chicken soup,” she told me. “It will feed the multitudes.”
And it will.
The air is still gold this morning. The blue of space is still shrouded in an ugly grey. I’m off for a few hours to shelve CD’s at our local branch library then have lunch with the poets group. I have no poem to bring with me, but they say they want me, that my critiques have value. They have value all by themselves, indeed.
Me: Very quiet physically every day since the fire started. Breathing is hard. At one point I made the bed, just because I was tired of the mess, and it felt like there was a lead weight on my chest. I must confess that I am very tired of not having any physical exercise. G says the same.
G: Lead weights here too. He was ordered in to work, then someone noticed that everyone at his company was at work in a mandatory evacuation area, and they were sent home…..oh hurrah. We had a quiet day.
Duck: He is at the asking the same questions over and over again. He is itching worse. We joined him at dinner until G’s blood sugar crashed into silence. Got the 97 year old a cat costume.
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