California Wildfires - Afterthoughts
I got a call on Tuesday at about 430am. My drummer was quick to inform me that there was a fire burning (!!!) within about 5 miles of my house. I really appreciated that phone call. I proceeded to call my brother and spread the word and interestingly enough my mom didn't pick up her phone but I knew she was sleeping and likely safe since she was farther away than I was. Naturally being awake so early and in "crisis mode" I didn't really want to go back to sleep. So what did I do?
Well, like every good cog in the machine, I decided I might as well go to work. If the fire approached it was doubtful I would be equipped to handle it anyways, so might as well bug out. I packed a change of clothes, and grabbed some important papers (birth cert, green card, etc) and headed out the door. I also grabbed my dance shoes and the cologne I like most and the toothbrush kit. On the drive to work there was little traffic and plenty of time for introspection.
What was the result of this? What was I thinking? Honestly it would suck if my house burned down and everything, but I kind of didn't really sweat about it. I got people to stay with and I can replace everything that's in there. I got a good job and a reliable albeit ugly car to take me there. Yes I left the 'Vette to it's supposed fiery fate, but it was either that or eventually break down so much that nobody would consider fixing it so I am sure if it was a sentient being it would prefer to be burned alive this way. Funny thing is, I also packed my dance shoes thinking that if it went down like that, I would definitely need some r&r on the dance floor to get over this. And I sure had a hard time finding those shoes and I spend a lot of time in them so there.
Turns out I was lucky and my house didn't burn down. The proximity of the fire and the fact that it was in a dense forest definitely made it look like it would be an issue, especially considering the thousands of acres burning in Napa just a few hours north of me. But I guess the redwood trees and the firefighters pulled through and got it on the run. As we speak, it is still burning and according to CalFire but it is very much under control:
At one point, they had 980 firemen assigned to this fire. In the past I have complained that maybe the additional fire tax in my area was a bit too much too soon. This was mainly because I had believed that the government was squandering the money and the actual firemen would not see a dime of it. I now stand corrected, because of the speed of response and quantity of individuals available I will now be smiling when cutting that check instead of assuming it is being wasted. Credit where credit is due, the funds somehow got through the bureaucracy and to the boots on the ground so to speak.
This story may seem trite to some who have been in a real disaster, and indeed when viewed in that light, it is very easily construed as such. I lost nothing except a few hours of sleep. How quaint of me to assume this would even be worth reading to anybody.
As a side note: I had numerous friends ask me if I needed a place to stay and offered their accommodations if needed. And no posts on Facebook attention grabbing crap, they just txted me like men should do.
Soooooo - What did I learn?
When there is a forest fire everybody within about a 50 mile radius seems to cough a lot without realizing it is due to the fire. They all thought they were sick. Really guys?
Also, I learned that life is good most of the time and I need to start enjoying that shit a bit more.