Monday, October 22, 2007

San Diego Wildfires

As you may have heard, San Diego is experiencing a rash of wildfires that will "...probably be the worst this county has ever seen – worse than the Cedar fire," Sheriff Bill Kolender said.

I just wanted everyone who is curious to know, that we are fine, we have packed a couple bags, but Noah is still in school so far, despite many closures, and we have been told to "keep an eye on the news" here in our community.

Following is an email I wrote to my family. Just so I don't have to rewrite everything, I am including it here:


Hey everyone...

I figured by the time the news gets out that way,you are all going to be worried about us.

There are at least 7 fires burning all over the western and southern sides of San Diego and the Santa Ana winds are blowing which means severe winds are blowing TOWARD the ocean instead of off of it. The fires are really nasty and heading into the city.

BUT! Do not worry about us. We ARE in neighborhood that is surrounded on three sides by wild canyon and mountains, but our house is securely in the center, and the fire is not directly heading our way at this point, and if it did, about 1000 houses would have to burn before it reached ours. We do not fear for our house at all.

What we do fear is evacuation.

There is a very strong smell of smoke in the air, the sky is pink in that direction, and I am keeping all the windows closed to keep the smell out. Our neighbor told us that this is just like the devastating Cedar Fire, and that on that day, they got a knock on their door telling them to leave now, and that we might want to collect some things now in case that happens again. So, I plan to pack a couple days clothes for everyone and put it in the car with baby bottles and sippy cups and diapers, and the important papers.

We can't go to Terri's (Michael's sister) because she is inland. Its more likely she will get evacuated to us first, being inland. Michael would likely just leave work and we might go north up to his mom's house.

We went to buy pumpkins at a pumpkin patch yesterday morning when all these fires started and it was so windy up there that the babies kept falling down. The pumpkin patch area, I believe already had the fire come through last night. It's basically mostly north of us, heading to the coast... but there are at least 6 other fires, two with virtually no news that might be more troublesome to us.

Today, I am taking the babies to Noah's school where he is in a short play and is getting an award for being one of the most responsible kids in his grade (one of the kids with the most"caught being responsible" tickets). So life goes on here in our neighborhood.

Here is a map to the worst fire, the Witch Fire. We live (omitted, but about 15 miles away) ...of the fire.

A new fire popped up right beside the Wild Animal Park, and they are attempting to catch and crate up the animals and remove them to their hospital. (edit: they are leaving the walking animals to wander because of the lack of shrubs. Condors are being taken indoors) Local cattle is being sent to the fairground and the airbase. SD Chargers stadium has been opened to evacuees. Lots of schools are closed. It's all expected to go for at LEAST the next two days. I will keep you informed if anything changes.


Elaine said...

Let me know if you need a place to go. I think my house is still in a safe zone and we're not in it (in La Paz) but I can tell you where to find a key. If you need to go coastal, I can send you to my moms in PB. Seriously, email me if you need something and I'll try to check frequently enough today to help if needed.

It's really hard to be so far away and worrying about all of you!

Gumby said...

We're thinking about you guys. I hope things settle down soon.

Shama-Lama Mama said...

We are packed and ready to go... well, mostly packed with a list of last minute stuff...

If we get the call, we will likely head to Elaine's first, and then suss out the situation, and decide if we will continue up to Encino before the weekend.

Michael needs to stay here in town to work, but has a couch to crash on.

Mom said...

Good luck. Here's hoping you won't have to leave but if you do keep us posted. Thanks Elaine for your offer of your house. That was so nice of you. I know we talked about things to pack. Don't forget insurance policies, Lambie, etc. Love you and thinking about you.