Thursday, November 10, 2016

Forest Fires are Near

Fires are devastating our beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains. Yesterday one fire was within a mile of my house. Not wanting to have to  evacuate in the middle of the night, I packed a few things and went to a motel. Today I will go back and try to decide what I must take with me in case my house burns.

The smoke is dangerous for everyone but especially for those of us with respiratory problems. Inside my house I feel pretty safe from the smoke with air purifiers going in every room, but can't use my heat pump. I am afraid it will bring outside air inside.

I am suffering from effects of the smoke, but those who  stay outside for any length of time complain of burning eyes, sore throats, and difficulty breathing. The ash in the air is  very harmful to breathe and I am going to stay as safe as possible.

How do you choose a few things from a lifetime of collecting meaningful objects, paper or hard material. I must save my sister's sculpture, my niece's wood-turned pieces, my husband's guitars, photographs, my mother's portrait, many binders with  genealogy research, family albums, my grandmother's trunk which is filled with photo albums. I  might need important papers regarding our house, my insurance, the latest bills  I need to  pay.

If my house burns and my computers are destroyed,  I  will lose some documents, probably, but the  one I would miss most is the  one with all my family history stored on Personal Ancestral File. Oh, I almost forgot. I want to take my original manuscript for my family history book.

It is hard to get up to date information about this fire. I am told I will be notified when the mandatory evacuation comes. The Sheriff's deputies will come to my door and tell me I have to leave. I don't want to wait and  have to  rush. I  am going to prepare for that now. Must go and  pack. Pray for rain,  please.


Elephant's Child said...

I am so sorry. Fires are a regular part of our summer (and in late Spring several towns have already been evacuated).
I hope you get rain, I hope the danger is averted, and my heart goes out to everyone in the fire's path.

Lise said...

Oh no, stay safe. Praying for rain!

Glenda Council Beall said...

Thanks, EC. I can't imagine living with this stress every year. This is the first time in the twenty years I have lived in the mountains that we have had such fires. We have had a long drought and no rain in sight. Once years ago my house down in south Georgia almost burned(it was redwood) when someone who lived behind my property left an open fire burning. It spread into the woods behind my house and I came home just as the fire was approaching our stable. Luckily I could protect our property with water hoses and the forestry folks came and plowed a fire break to protect us from further worry.

Elephant's Child said...

It is part of the reason that I never, ever complain about rain. Sadly each year some of our fires are deliberately lit.
Some years ago (on my birthday) my city lost over 500 homes, four people lost their lives and innumerable birds and animals lost their homes and lives. Definitely scary. And for those with breathing issues (as I gather you do) downright dangerous. I hope your danger is averted quickly.

Abbie Taylor said...

Glenda, I know it's hard, but please keep in mind you are the one thing that cannot be replaced. You're in my thoughts.

Glenda Council Beall said...

Thank you all for your comments. I talked with my niece who lost her home in California a few years ago. She said it happened suddenly. The police came and said they had to leave quickly. Luckily she had decided earlier to pack up her beautiful wood pieces she had created over the years and some other things, but she said she had important papers stored in fire proof boxes that were lost. The fire melted the boxes and even melted glass. Nothing was left. She said people lost lives in that fire.
I am glad I evacuated myself before I had to leave quickly. My wonderful friends, Mary Mike and MC filled a SUV with paintings, boxes of pictures, my mother's portrait, Barry's guitars, and so many other things. It took all afternoon to do this. I could never have done it without them. Mike will keep these things for me until I can safely return or have a place for them again.
Someone told me today that I am blessed to have such good friends. I said, Indeed I am blessed. With no family near me, I have some friends who are always there for me. Mary Mike went back to my house today to get old family albums that have been in my family for 100 years. How can I ever thank her enough?

Abbie Taylor said...

Glenda, you are so lucky to have friends willing to help you move your stuff. I hope everything works out for the best.

Far Side of Fifty said...

I am glad you were able to save some of your treasures. I hope rain comes soon.

Glenda Council Beall said...

Thank you all for your caring and your comments. I am safe at my sister's house and heard tonight that those who have been evacuated can go back home. Of course, some have gone back but the smoke is so bad they can't stay. A friend sent me a photo and told me the smoke was especially bad tonight.
I had a good day. Went to Target and did some shopping. We don't have a target hear us in the mountains. To live there you have to be willing to give up shopping in the big stores. I usually order my clothes and shoes online now. It is easier than trying to go to different stores. I went to Belk's recently and was too frustrated by what they have on the racks and difficulty in finding my size to buy anything much.

Abbie Taylor said...

I'm glad you're safe, Glenda. I hpe the smoke clears, and you can return to your home soon.