It’s E day in the April blogging from A to Z challenge.
Today, I choose edgy. I’m feeling that way, as are many others in my area. Why? It’s windy, with gusts up to 60 miles per hour, and there’s a red flag warning, meaning that current conditions are ripe for wildfires. So no open flames, fires, etc.
Last December 30 had similar conditions, although it was even windier with gusts well above 100mph. It was drier then, too, having been months without significant precipitation. That day, it really happened, a fire ignited somehow and within a few short hours, roared through more than 6000 acres destroying 1100 homes in two towns and unincorporated Boulder County. The next day we had snow. This is Colorado, after all.
Wind and wildfires, fairly common here in the western US. What isn’t common are wildfires in winter, and the amount and rapidity of destruction. Many of the structures burned are in town, not surrounded by trees or bordered by open space. The fire jumped a 6 lane divided highway, something that surprised even the firefighters. This was different. As I’ve written before, we are all in the process of recovery. Those who lost homes have an enormous and lengthy challenge before them, those of us more fortunate are still adjusting. And now it’s windy, and there’s a red flag warning. Yes, we’re all on edge. The residue of the past certainly influences our present
Official suggestions include securing loose stuff in one’s yard as protection against the wind. We often put our trash and recycling out the night before its early morning pickup. I’ll put a reminder on my water kettle so I remember to do it in the morning. There are also reminders to have a “go bag” packed. Just in case we have to evacuate, again. It’s good, solid advice, and I find myself struggling with doing this. I suspect there’s a part of me that doesn’t want to believe/accept the possibility that it could happen again. Yet I know it can. Not two weeks ago there was another fire nearby, this time it was my brother and his sons with an evacuation order. No injuries, no structural damage, phew!
So despite my edginess and irritability and desire to deny, I’ll go get some stuff rounded up. What goes in the bag? Depending on who you are, and where you live, the contents may vary. https://www.ready.gov/kit is a government page which covers the basics. For me: Clothes for a few days, toiletries, medicines, prescription and otherwise. Computer, chargers, important papers, passport, cash. Cat food, cat box, water and food for a few days. Flashlight or lantern, blankets or sleeping bag. A full gas tank is a good idea. Something to read or otherwise entertain yourself.
I guess it’s time to go check my preparations. And yes, we’re edgy. Do bring patience and a sense of humor. Everything is easier then.