Tuesday, September 6, 2011

We Are Safe

After a scary afternoon with no power and a fire burning way too close to my husband's office and 3(!) of my friend's homes, things seem to be under control again. That particular fire was started by some IDIOT throwing matches into a dry creek bed. As if mother nature wasn't enough. Anyway, as you can see from the video above, these fires are not to be trifled with. And not to be gross and political, we have Rick Perry to thank for making it so incredibly difficult to get the resources in place to fight these fires. Texas Cut Fire Department Funding by 75% This Year
For those of you not living in the state and find him an ideal candidate, please dig a little deeper and see how he has taken our schools from bad to abysmal and slashed public services. His own family doesn't even like his politics.

Spoke Too Soon

As I made my last post, a fire started very close to us. I can hear sirens. It's closer to my friend's house than mine, and she is without power.
I found out on Twitter, and I'm following the developments here
We are ready to go, if need be.

Texas is on Fire

 As you may have heard, we are experiencing some serious wildfires here. The map above shows the situation as it was when I woke up at 7 this morning. (Real time fire map here) The fire in Bastrop County is 16 miles long and as wide as 6 miles in some places. If you are not familiar with Texas geography, East Texas is a pine forest. A huge, very dry, pine forest. It's a perfectly terrible situation for fire. There is no rain forecasted for the next ten days.
My husband and I figured out an evacuation meeting point, and a backup meeting point in case the first place we picked had to be evacuated as well. I packed a "go bag" and gathered all of our important documents so I could grab them in a hurry if need be. We're nervous. It's surreal to look out your window and everything appears fine but know that less than an hour's drive in any direction, there's fire.

Now, as I write this around one pm (the above map shows the current situation), things are feeling slightly less scary. The fires that were within 10 miles of our house are under control or out. The winds have died down. I've heard FEMA is supposed to be here today. 
But our resources are maxed out. All reports are that fire-fighting capabilities have been stretched to the breaking point. There is no guarantee that some idiot won't toss a lit cigarette, light a BBQ or drive a hot car over dead grass and start another massive fire. We are just trying to be safe and ready to go if need be, and to help out our Central Texas neighbors anyway we can.

You can help too, by making a donation to the American Red Cross of Central Texas . The last report I heard said 475 homes in the area have been completely destroyed and many more damaged. Every little bit helps these people in their time of need.

Meanwhile, I finished a quilt top this weekend. Crafting is always soothing.