Monday, June 23, 2008

Smoke in the Air

Ah, the sweet smell of California summer: smoke from nearby wildfires. The nearest is about 25 miles away by road, if I am listening to the scanner correctly, up in the Cherry Creek drainage. That means on the OTHER side of the Tuolumne River. That’s a good thing, as resources statewide – manpower and air tanker support – are all working fires in populated areas, fires that threaten homes, farms and livestock. The fire rule you hear all the time is that during the day fire burns up slope and up canyon. At night, when the air is cooler, the fire settles down and smoke drifts in other directions. So while our days are often relatively smoke-free when a wildfire is burning nearby, we wake up to smoke in the morning. It’s now nearly 9:30 a.m. and the air is still heavy with smoke, enough so that the houses across the two lanes of Ferretti Road are visibly obscured and the sky is a uniform grey.

Air quality warnings are out all over northern California. We are urged to stay inside, not to exercise too heavily, especially is we are elderly or have breathing or heart problems. The original smog, competing with Hawaii’s vow (volcanic air pollution).

From downstairs I am hearing, “Hello. Hello? Hello! Hello?” For the first time since she arrived just over a week ago, Goldie the Parrot has decided to speak out. She has been muttering for several days, but today she is calling for Verna just as she does in her own house.

Got a badly needed “animal fix” yesterday afternoon, visiting a friend who has two cats and two Golden Retrievers. After petting the cats, I was reminded that I really do have an allergy to some cat dander – sneezing, itchy eyes, and all. It got better once I washed my hands and opened a window. The dogs did not seem to create the same problem. They are wonderful, but I love Goldens anyway. The younger male is curious, into everything, wants to chew on small, plastic objects like clocks, timers, and cell phone chargers …. I was careful to put my shoes out of his reach! The female, Abby, is older, more mellow, better behaved, and seemed a little jealous when Andy got too much attention.

Onward. Look up! Give thanks for the good, don’t waste time feeling sorry. Don’t forget to pray!

1 comment:

  1. Bonnie, Bonnie, Bonnie...
    Last night I saw a map that showed pretty much all of northern CA under smoke/smog---something we don't experience here in northern IL---well, the smoke, anyway.

    When I lived near Flagstaff, AZ I did experience forest fire in the area. A large "controlled" burn got waaay out of control, and we lived in the haze for a week or more. I lived outside of Flagstaff, on a several-acre plot surrounded by the Coconino National Forest.

    I followed the fire information link on your blog page, and, if nothing else, learned a new word! "conterminous" Simply means contiguous, but possibly someone at the USDA got a new thesaurus!

    We sure hope you are still planning on getting out this way this fall. Although there was a 40-45 year gap in our acquaintance, I felt like I really connected with you as a friend, and want to not let go of that this time---waaaay too valuable to let go of again!

    Keep on plugging away, keep us all up to date!!! You are in our thoughts and prayers, Lady.

    Gene & BG


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