Yesterday was a day of unveiling unthinkable horrors. The fires ravaged the homes of friends and wildlife all across Napa, Sonoma, and Santa Rosa. Every advance had some fresh horrors, friends or family or folks we care about. Safari West has been an on again off again nightmare. I heard initially from Marie that the fire was stalled, then that they were assessing what to do, then that the Oakland Zoo was standing by to take rescued animals, then this report of the owner, Peter Lang staying at the site and putting out spot fires with attached garden hoses to make sure the animals were safe, while his home burned to the ground.
I still haven’t heard from Rusty or Robin, or Tom of Sonoma Birding, there are so many people we care about in trouble. This morning there were mandatory evacuations not far enough from IBR where Cheryl works. I heard from Amy the artist who will be working with us this summer that they live right at the border of trouble on the Silverado Trail in Napa. She was staying with friends and filled with concern. It has been the same for everyone all day, all night, all over.
And is still.
This was unbelievable footage of them evacuating Kaiser Hospital in Santa Rosa.
Just one story, and you know there are thousands of them. Pets and horses in shelters, schools closed or burned down, downed power and broken cell service so families can’t even know if each other are safe. Not to mention all the millions of dollars tied up in wineries all across the burning landscape. (Whatever California Wine you own you better set it aside for safe keeping, because the next bottle you buy is going to cost a lot more.)
There is, in all this gloom, a single bright spot. I saw county supervisor Brad Wagenecht on channel 5 talking about what was evacuated in Napa and thought I’d express my condolences and ask one impertinent question. We have had contact over the years because he sometimes visits the beaver pond in what used to be Napatopia (and now seems more like Napageddon). He even came to one of our festivals a few years back. Of course you know exactly what I asked.
He wrote this morning to answer the beavers in Tulocay creek are fine.