Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Wildfire Update #3

Although this tragedy is no where near over, at least we can say that for most, the worst part of this nightmare is over.

Over the past several days, I have been involved with packing, food prep., and caring for the dogs. Our local news stations have been broadcasting news and updates 24/7. Thus, I have been glued to the local news for days now. This morning, I clicked over to the Fox News Channel to find out what else has been happening in the world. One news story revealed that there was a man suspected of deliberately starting a fire in Hesperia (sp?). I think that is in or near Orange County? Forgive me for not doing a search to find out the details. I have just a few minutes to post this.

I was horrified to hear about this!!! Apparently, a witness saw a white male get off of his motorcycle and set some brush on fire. AWFUL!!! They caught the man and he has been identified. Not sure if charges have been brought against him yet.

Last night was the third night in a row of restless sleep patterns. I would sleep for an hour or two, then wake up in order to hear the lastest news about fire evacuations. As I had mentioned in a previous post comment, we have been so fortunate to have been spared from any direct danger associated with the fire.

My husband went out and bought a Hepa filter vacuum to clean up the ash on our driveway and patio. He read on a website that the ash should not be swept, blown around or watered down. The best clean-up is using a hepa filter vacuum. We are lucky that we had cotton face masks stored in the garage. All the stores are now sold out of them.

Since I didn't sleep much last night, I went back to bed at 7 and awoke at 9! I usually never sleep that late. Guess I needed the extra sleep after these three very emotional days.

The air quality is bad, so I need to keep our dogs inside. My American Eskimo keeps crying to go out! She loves to lay in the shady grass all day. She doesn't understand that we can't let her lay around in the black soot and ashes.

This morning, when I took the dogs out briefly for them to do their business, I noticed the return of birds chirping and crows cawing in and around our yard. During the previous two days we had gusty winds blowing and smoke and ash flying everywhere. It seemed that there were no birds to be found. The quietness certainly added to the eeriness of these tragic days.

It is difficult to just wait around and hope that this firestorm will end. It's hard not knowing whether or not our friends kept or lost their homes.

Finally, we received some very good news!! Every one of our friends and co-workers whom we knew were evacuated, have houses that survived the firestorm! Thank God!! We were really worried about two families because their houses were in the direct line of the Witch Creek fire. Thankfully, their homes were spared!!

Now that we are in the clear and it's unlikely that we will need to evacuate, I wanted to volunteer at our church today. The church was set up as an additional evacuation center on Oct. 23rd. However, the third email sent out mentioned that they had enough volunteers for now (over 600 responded!!). I will wait and show up on a day when more volunteers are needed.

If you noticed the news reports, the Qualcomm Stadium evacuation center was so efficient in all respects that the people there were not only having their immediate survival needs met, but they were also entertained by teachers, clowns, volunteers, etc. who kept them busy with various activities. How wonderful to hear that some joy was spread around to people who have suffered so much in this terrible ordeal.

I will be updating in the future. For now, I want to again thank all of you who have emailed or commented here messages of concern for me and my family. I sincerely appreciate it!

Most of all, thank you for your prayers. That is the most comforting gift of all!


Update: Article about arson suspect

Second Update: California fires spark suspicion of terror again; FBI warning had included prospect of attack with flames


MB said...

prayers of thanksgiving that you're okay. i checked your blog all day!

Susan Smith said...

Dear Christine:

Accidents do not happen...what a blessing to the world for God to have placed a Christian sister who happens to have a blog right in the middle of what appears to the world to be a calamity.

God is already using this for His good will and purpose and this will be for His glory as many will see that HE is God. Know you are loved and prayed for this day. May you have spiritual ears to hear His voice. Much love... (ss)