Wednesday, July 18, 2012

My Worst Fears.......


First, let me say we are OK. The fire, while still burning in spots will be put out today, I'm sure of that. The weather is cooperating, 40F overnight, clouds, and little wind this morning. Then let me say that I was planning a delightful blog for today, but now it has to wait until Friday or Saturday.


I was in town getting new eyeglasses and my teeth cleaned yesterday. When I was done and turned my phone back on there were 7 calls from my hubby and 2 from my neighbor. I saw the fire from town, but didn't realize the canyon was in jeopardy. I told my husband, I 'm coming home and set out on HWY 58. 


This picture is from TV News and it's what greeted me at the exit, which wasn't closed so I got off the highway. There was an enormous number of sheriffs, fire trucks, police cars, and people wanting to go home gathered by several fields engulfed in flames and the mountain behind it burning too. No luck with going home, no one was allowed to enter the canyon. 
So I went back to town, to the store for some emergency food, with my insulin dependent diabetes, that has to come first -- insulin and food. Then I went to my brother-in-law's place to see if anyone was home and they were. So I knew I would have a place to stay. And I stayed for a while to rest. 


My husband called and said the flames were on the ridge line behind us where there is a real forest of tall fir trees and things could get bad fast. He said the smoke was so thick at our house, it was difficult to breathe. I had my medical emergency kit ready and we decided, so calmly, what else we would take. He packed it, as much as he could carry since he had no working car there....but that's another story. If it got bad, I was sure he would coordinate with the rescue manager or find a ride somehow. I really, really hated to be separated from him, Soldier and Samson in an emergency. That was the worst.


But I couldn't just sit there, so I decided to go back to the canyon and see what was happening. Driving down the road, I looked up at the freeway, which was completely covered in trucks standing still. All seven miles from town to the canyon and beyond hundreds of trucks that couldn't move. I have read that tens of thousands of trucks go through the pass every day, and now I believe it. I have never seen anything like it. Somewhere in there a sheriff told me the canyon was open again. So I was able to get home. The wind had changed and the fire moved east toward the wind farms on the other side of the mountains from where we live.


This is what was lost, a house built in the early 1900s, it must have been one of the oldest in the canyon; this field, and all brush on the mountain above; many wind turbines, and, sadly 


the SS Minnow. I loved this boat, all by itself in a field. On the TV news, they mentioned her and called her: The iconic SS Minnow. So I guess she must have been something in her day.


This is what's left of her now.



When I drove home on the canyon road, I saw so many fire trucks, fire fighters, sheriffs, and Kern County official vehicles, and I felt calm. When I saw a fire fighter on the road, I said "Thank You," through my car window.  Now that I have seen a field of rabbit brush burn up, now that I have seen a mountain go up in flames, now that I have seen that up close, I have some knowledge. I believe that knowledge helps one be less afraid. The fire will end up burning less than 2,000 acres, so not a large fire. The response was enormous. With all the wind farms on those mountains a lot was at stake. The wind farm closest to us, in the picture above, is completely burned. But we are OK and for that I am so grateful.







33 comments:

  1. inger, i am so glad you and yours are safe! as i read this, my stomach was clenched. after feral woman's trauma, i just hoped it would be well. i hope they can put out the remaining fire spots today.

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  2. OH NO!!!!!I am soooo glad you ARE OKAY and that your husband is, and your furry family too! To be separated at a time like that must have been very stressful! but it sounds like they got a good handle on it right away...please get rest Inger, and turn on those sprinklers!!!

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  3. Oh Inger, how awful! I can't imagine how stressful this must have been. You handled everything so calmly it seems.. I would have been a wreck! I'm so glad that you, your hubby and furry friends are okay. How scary!

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  4. I'm glad you, your family, animals and home are okay. Fire is such a frightening thing. The other night I saw smoke over the ridge and smelled it all evening -- its such a frightening thing when you live in the wilderness.

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  5. I am so glad you and yours and your home are safe! Whew

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  6. I agree with Tex -- after what we've seen on Feral's blog, I wouldn't want you to have to go through it too. xo

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  7. I'm glad you're okay. This is a bad summer for fires all over the west!

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  8. Oh my goodnesses, I am impressed withs hows you handled dis situation...you deserve a pat on da back. I knows dat had to be terribles to watch knowin' you was seperated from your loved ones. But thank goodness ya'll is all okays.
    One thing I wanna say is dat I am so glad you told dat fireman Thank You, he prolly don't hears it enuffs.

    Puddles
    PS: and your comment on my bloggie made me chuckle ut loud...hehehe.

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  9. Oh how scary Inger, I'm so glad you and yours are safe but it must be hard deciding what to do and what to take if you have to evacuate your home. I keep complaining about the rain here but at least we don't have those kind of fires. Keep safe.

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  10. Oh Inger that is so scary I am glad it all turned out. Please take care of yourself and just like Feral Woman said get some rest. B

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  11. Thank God you're okay! It sounds like a very stressful situation, but you handled it very well. Sad to see any damage to such beautiful, interesting landscape too. And, too bad about the S S Minnow. What would Gilligan say?

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  12. Oh I'm glad to hear that you are all okay. phew. But how scary. And how sad for all that is lost.

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  13. As soon as I read the title to your post I was worried. I'm glad that your property and all of you are safe.

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  14. Such a scary summer. I'm so glad you are all safe.

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  15. I am so grateful that you are all right.

    Love,
    Janie

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  16. Hang in there Inger you got alot of strength!

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  17. We've been seeing these sights here in Utah quite a lot this summer. Very scary. I'm glad you are okay and I hope it doesn't get any closer to you.

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  18. So glad you were able to make it home and that all is as well as it can be. Stay safe.

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  19. That was too close for comfort. Thank goodness the wind shifted.

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  20. Fire is a terrible thing. I can scare the living daylights out of you , then eat you up.

    Glad you and your family were to unharmed. It could have been so much worse.

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  21. Detta var ju frutansvärt Inger...jag är så glad att du är OK och om jag förstår rätt så är ni alla ok och även ert hem och omgivning. Elden är verkligen skräckinjagande och detta vill man inte uppleva på så nära håll. Hoppas du återhämtar dig, take care !

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  22. Never mind the wind farms. They can be rebuilt. Just glad to hear you're safe. You need some of our continual torrential rain over there!

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  23. Men shit då!! Skall ni få det med? Måste varit jobbigt att vara ifrån dem därhemma innan du visste att allt var ok. Hoppas elden inte drar åt ert håll nu...håll oss underrättade vad som händer hos dig.
    Var försiktiga!! Kram!

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  24. What a scare you had! So glad that everything is going to be okay and you and your loved ones are safe.

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  25. It's Thursday morning and I'm on my way to the Diabetes Support Group in town. I'm taking my camera for sure. They put out most of the fire close to use yesterday, and in the evening the rest was 50% contained and expected to be 100% contained today. We are all OK, thank you so much for your concern. I will write an update when I come back home or tomorrow morning.

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  26. I'm so glad you're okay, Inger! We do have to be prepared for such emergencies. There are so many of them this year. It does make one stop and think about the important things in life. It is sad, though, to see such old houses and boats destroyed. Out here in Virginia, near D.C., as you know we've had some troubled times too. My oldest daughter north of us, about 30 miles from D.C., lost their power for five days. They're in a rural spot, and had no water. They realized they had to be better prepared. Humans always like to think it won't happen to them, and then it does!

    Again, so glad you and your husband are okay. Wow, that was close!

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  27. That was terribly scary especially being separated from your home and family. I once had fire come on to my property in Florida and I can only say the sound of flames scalding dry brush is evil sounding.
    So glad you are all Ok.
    I think the SS Minnow was Gilligan's boat in that old TV series. So that is where it ended up.

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  28. Each time I see or hear about the fires out West I think of you...there in the canyon, Inger! I am so relieved that you, hubby and the dogs are fine!...:)JP

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  29. Patti: Oh, no, do you think it was the actual boat from Gilligan's Island? Maybe that's why the TV guy called it iconic. Someone told me, when I posted the good picture of her some time ago, that she had the same name as the Gilligan Island boat. But I didn't think it could be the same boat. I wonder who the guy was who lost that house that the boat sat next to. I guess it's Google time for this now.
    Thanks everyone for all you kind thoughts and comments.

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  30. No, this one boat is much smaller, so I guess it's the name that is iconic. Too tired to look deep into this mystery!!

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  31. Dear Inger, when I began reading this posting, I didn't know what to expect and as you led us into the story, I began to fear the worse for your husband and the dogs. So I was vastly relieved to learn at the end that all was well. But what a scare and how frightening for all of you who live in that canyon.

    I remember that a month or so ago you posted a photograph of that boat. Life and all its accouterments truly are fleeting.

    I'm so glad all is well for you. Peace.

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Thanks for leaving a comment.. ~~ Inger

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