The Great Escape
Massive wildfires are raging around me. This morning at 4:30am, after watching the television reports and checking the internet, I insisted that Nannygoat evacuate her apartment immediately. Or as immediately as you can evacuate a 2 ½ year old and a 2 month old. I was watching live coverage of the fire burning against the black night and her apartment building was directly in the path of the fire. Just 45 minutes later her area was listed as a mandatory evacuation. I called my boss on his cell because he is also in that area. He was already on his way out. My work is also there, so I knew I would not be going in. It took her nearly three hours to make the 25 mile trip. Since they had no cell phone it was the longest time of my life. I was so relieved when they arrived. They appeared to have escaped the Witch Fire (south of us).
In the meanwhile the Rice Fire (to the north of us) flared up. I was actually supposed to be there in the middle of the fire at 9am for a second interview. I called, just in case, but there was no answer.
The day was spent with all of us crammed into MacDougal’s little place, unable to tear ourselves away from the coverage. Our shock and dismay deepened as new video showed that the neighborhood worst hit was our old house, our old street. We watched live shots of the house burning, friends’ houses burning. All the while watching and wondering where it was going next. The fire also started climbing up towards us on the south side. By afternoon nearly half a million people were evacuated. Cousin It went down the hill to near the burning area to get his daughter. Her mother’s house had been evacuated and the place they went to had air quality that was not acceptable.
The Witch fire continued to move east and as it approached Sparkles house we called him yet again and told him not to wait any longer. He came up and watched with us. Then he realized it was really as bad as we said and went back home to get his cat. MacDougal went with him and the cat peed all over him. Now we were all together. Waiting and watching.
I have no pictures of that day. We were all too shocked to do anything but sit and watch and entertain Ladybug, Butterball, and Krackers (Cousin Its’ 6 year old daughter). I stayed up late into the night, monitoring the fires, but I fell asleep in my chair.