7.18.2007

Fire and Rain

"I've seen fire and I've seen rain,
I've seen sunny days that I thought would never end."

James Taylor

Today was the first day in a long time I saw rain. I also saw the evidence of fire. When I studied the outdoor thermometer early this morning it was below 80 degrees. What a change. When I looked at the sky it was hazy with smoke from forest fires. I am relieved for the cooler weather. It meant I could work in the garden weeding and deadheading without wilting and getting a sunburn. I am also apprehensive for the thunderstorms that may come tonight. It is always a balancing act with summer weather.The headlines of the paper today said that the firefighters got weather help. The Bulldog Fire is north of us about thirty miles. The Tunk Grade Fire further west is close to Omak which is about 100 miles away. It is the largest fire in the area and has burned 16,000 acres. A ban was put on open burning in our county today. Our fire danger is high.

We live in a community with our own water system. The well pump quit working today so our system tank was half empty. All of this is a concern to homeowners that live in a rural area that is very dry. Everyone in the neighborhood is conscientious and ready to help. I love that about Martin Creek Community.

I'll sleep better tonight because the weather has cooled. I will hopefully get to work more outside tomorrow. I will also watch the sky, weather reports, and fire updates to see what is happening in our area. I will lay awake though if I hear the sound of thunder and the sight of lightening. Also I dread the smell of smoke as it fills the night air. This is what the fire season holds for us in northeastern Washington.

All the pictures of the Tunk Grade fire are courtesy of Jed Conklin/The Spokesman Review. The firefighters are seen above through their fire-retardant-covered windshield along the fire line near Omak.

15 comments :

  1. I'm glad it's cooler for you and the firefighters. Hope you get rain WITHOUT the lightning, to help put out the fires and bring some much-needed water to you all.

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  2. Tinker: Me too. So far so good this evening.(:

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  3. We had rain clouds yesterday, but no rain. It has been dry here also, with many wildfires burning all around. The air cleared when the clouds came in and today it was truly clear for the first time in a week or two.

    Then this evening, the Hunk said there was smoke (fire) to the west of us.

    Hope there aren't any fires in Eastern Washington or Northern Idaho. I am also hoping for temperate summer weather. Low 80s.

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  4. I can't imagine what it must be like living with that fear. I'm praying for rain but not fire!

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  5. Thanks for a sobering reminder of fires and the brave fighters. It brought back so many memories that I could almost smell the smoke. Southern Idaho would get its share of much smaller brush fires, always a threat to the small forests nearby. . .we could see the blazes on the hills surrounding Pocatello.
    Also, love your new format and photos. Your blog is really first rate and a joy to read!

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  6. It's odd how when we are not living another person's reality it seems impossible and distant, but when we are faced with it, what other choice do we have but to live with it? I can't imagine our green on fire. The ways of the world seem like science fiction to me.

    James Taylor lived very near where I grew up. I wrote him a fan love letter once and saw him in concert several times when he was shy and wore suspenders.

    Glad to find you!

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  7. Colleen: I love that you wrote JT a love fan letter. I did get to see him in concert at the Gorge a few years ago which is an outdoor concert venue which is next to the Columbia River. It is the best place to go for a concert, espcially James Taylor. Sometimes even today he still seems a bit shy and unassuming. I think that is part of the appeal for me. (:

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  8. So much of life here we take for granted; including forrest fires. The horrific deaths of several summers ago gave me renewed appreciation for the people who saddle up and ride into the fire, so to speak. I loved the picture seen through the fire-retardant-covered windshield. sigh. Summer isn't all roses and tomatoes off the vine.

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  9. We keep our fingers crossed this time of year, that if there is thunder and lightening - there is also enough rain to put out the fires. It scares me, too. My older sister lives in Twisp and when I talked to her a couple days ago, she said there was a lot of smoke in the air up there from the Omak fire. Omak is almost 40 miles from Twisp.

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  10. JBelle: I agree. We had a fire close to home last year and I knew quite a few of the guys fighting it as volunteer firemen. I do appreciate them.
    Jackie: Twisp is close. They had such horrible fires a few years ago. It did cool down and rain here today. :)

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  11. Poured here last night - muggy today.
    fire up in the Blue's and the smoke is hazy, too.

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  12. Pamela: Yes, it sounds like our summers now in Washington state.

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  13. That's scary. The fires aren't too far away. We got rain here also and I'm hoping to work in the garden today. Those are good pics of the firefighters!

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  14. Yes, Jed did a good job. The one of the firefighters in the cab of the truck was a bigger shot in the paper. It caught my eye right away. Happy gardening today.

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  15. I find it so interesting how the fires have names. Those firefighting photos are fantastic! I always wondered how they kept the windshields of those trucks from melting or cracking in the heat. Thanks for providing an answer!

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