Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Red Sunset over Santa Barbara

The Jesusita Fire

Locals in my hood are expected to greet each other, especially on the weekend with,
Ho-Hum... Another day in paradise.
Well, for the last two days, Paradise has hosted a visit from hell. Hellacious, 50-knot winds bearing a firestorm.

Some call it a flaming dagger aimed at the heart of the city.

Too much for this old man: check the boat, knock down a few Coronas with friends in the harbor, and locate a couple of serviceable flashlights in the house, before crawling onto the bed and watching Mannywood and the Dodgers. Let my Dobie do what she does best: answering the door.


  1. That looks like the painted cave fire all over again. We lived up there during that terror. East Camino Cielo up top. You are one very lucky man to be living in the harbor in my paradise.

  2. Yes, Utah. I'm very lucky to be living in the cheap seats near the harbor. The Painted Cave Fire has stood the test of time as the greatest community disaster in living memory. Here's to it remaining as such.

    This was a long night. 75 deg Fahrenheit. Choppers. Smoke. And no reverse-911 phone calls. Yet. Sure prefer worrying about friends to fearing for my own skin. Took a long look at my neighborhood while I retrieved the papers. Superficially, except for the ash on the ground, the 'hood is uneffected. But just below the surface, we are all effected. Deeply. It will turn out that all of us will know someone totally devastated.

    Here come the fixed-wings....

  3. After seeing and hearing years of reports about California fires it was quite a turn to see something similar around Myrtle Beach. I don't know what the environment is or was in your area resulting in the fires but for those around Myrtle Beach it was a case of over development.

    Much of the area that caught fire is heavily developed with subdivisions and businesses but just a few years ago most of that land was marshy wetlands. While those wetlands would catch fire sometimes during dry summer months after lightening strikes but they hardly ever threaten homes and were primarily a concern for the loss of forests used for logging.

    With the construction of all those homes and buildings those marshes were drained or filled in so fine lawns and golf courses could be built. The wetlands acted as a buffer preventing the rapid spread of the fire but the sculpted golf course, homes, and what woods are left do fine for kindling in those dry months that come sooner and stay longer.