Monday, June 30, 2008

Smoke Rage

Listening to the community radio station and reading the papers and local Yahoo bulletin board, there seems to be concern about folks having "panic attacks" when having difficulty breathing in the smoky air. But what I've felt has been more akin to "road rage", where the frustration at circumstances that can't be controlled, namely dense smoke in every direction, starts to manifest as anger. I'm calling it smoke rage.

When I left the house to go to work this morning, I could just barely see some blue color if I looked directly overhead at the sky. But the mountains surrounding Willits were still completely obscured by smoke. By mid-morning, a little wind had picked up, giving hope of some better air to come. Then just before lunchtime, fire engines started screaming down the road to the east, and the valley filled with even thicker white smoke - the lowest visibility yet. Apparently a new fire erupted on Pine Mountain somewhere. Nooooooooooooh! [Smoke Rage!]

And as I go to run some errands on my lunch hour, I see young mothers out strolling their babies is this muck! Children running around playgrounds! Do they not read the advisories?! Do they not hear the precautions to take on the radio?! Stay inside! Protect children from outdoor exertion! [Smoke Rage!]

When I got to the bank, the line was quite long and slow moving. Then a young woman comes in and leaves the door propped open! She was oblivious! I was heading over to it, when finally someone else coming in caught it for us. [Smoke Rage!]

Oh, and now, just as I write this, I feel a little earthquake jolt. Great. Let's just add insult to injury here. Unbelievable. Reminds me of a bumper sticker I saw recently: Come the Rapture, can I have your car?

I have more pictures of the staging area on Navarro Ridge from last week, and others from here in Willits of helicopters and smoke, on my Overflow Blog.

The Mendocino Complex page at CalFire. If you go to the right side column on that page, there's a good map dated 6/29 of the incidents around here.


Kim said...

Good grief, shake and bake indeed! I'm hoping with you for big break of fresh air very soon. I think your coining the term "smoke rage" is brilliant, and you should cc the local news with your blog entry. Hope you're able to hang in there through all these irritants, Elaine.
Seattle Daily Photo

Dina said...

Really awful. And I remember a bumper sticker "I love California despite her faults." Is the tremor over??

Ming the Merciless said...

Yikes, wild fire and an earthquake on the same day. Scary!

Stay safe!

Z said...

Oh wow, a pretty heavy post! I'd probably be experiencing the same feelings. The propped-door to an air-conditioned space is something I've encountered (I still remember where in Maryland it was that I first saw this) and 'smoke rage' comes close to describing my reaction...

By the way, I too had to get used to the red circle instead of the slash through to denote something forbidden.

Petrea said...

Brilliant, honest. So hot there today, too. Do you need a place to go? email me.

You remind me of how angry I get when I see someone watering their cement.