Evacuated again, and another repeat of three years ago, fleeing our home in the dark amid raging winds, with pink and red fire plumes billowing around us.
The car was filled with computers and photo albums and hastily packed suitcases.
We’re safe though.
This one is called the Glass Fire, named after some mountain road near the fire’s origin. It has burned all week, destroyed homes and wineries and parks, and continues to burn. It is only 5% contained, despite unending acts of heroism. The cause is under investigation.
The fire came within ten miles of our home, but has fortunately steered in the opposite direction. Many people were not so lucky.
As many of you know, water is the soothing attraction when Athena and I encounter the threat of fires. This time we found ourselves down at the Berkeley Marina. Our dear friends in Berkeley opened their adjacent cottage to us, fed us meals and cheered us up, always masked and from a safe distance.
Down at the San Francisco Bay, the fog was coming in, cool and refreshing. You can see it on the horizon (center).
Bay Area cities like Berkeley often get the ashes and smoke of our fires from the north. This time, however, the winds were in a different direction and we were blessed with cool fog and fresh air. I’ve heard the toxic miasma has since arrived.
The boats are moored in a quiet inlet, but just around the corner is the big bay. It was windy, the water had white caps. The driving wind is what is wreaking havoc on the fires.
You can see San Francisco across the bay, and the fog.
We were evacuated for three nights, but are back home now. We have a home to return to, a wonderful thing. The air is choked with smoke and toxins because the fires are still raging. We may need to evacuate again, are prepared to flee.
We soldier on, and this will end, but meanwhile we are grateful for the love and friendships of you, our friends, and the smiles of strangers. I can see the smiles, even under the face masks.
Written by Jet Eliot.
Photos by Athena Alexander.
Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco, taken at a different time.