Firestorms .... Evacuation ... Survival
I was asleep when the reverse 911 call came in.
I knew we had Santa Ana conditions and a fire was way, way up in the mountains. Never imagined it would come to this ... Nearly 1 million Californians displaced.
I woke up the kids and called my husband who was working late to come and get us! We left at 2 a.m Monday and saw the flames advancing over the ridge.
After 5 days with just the clothes on our backs and the 5 of us living pretty much out of our van 100 miles north, we're back in Escondido today and thankful our home was spared.
Many of our neighbors were not so fortunate and it's difficult to see all the charred foundations where houses once stood.
I drove up the mountain to check on some of our kids' schoolmates and after much confusion mixed with some denial, I realized I couldn't find or see their homes because . . . well, the homes were not there anymore! The schools are getting lists together of kids whose homes burned to the ground. It is so sad.
The firefighters who saved our neighborhood commented that we were extremely fortunate since there were walls of flames almost 360 degrees around us. Our kittens are safe but scared and weak. I gave them baths, cleaned out their eyes, ears and noses which were filled with soot.
We have lots of ash and some came into the house through the door jams. We will be cleaning all weekend and for weeks to come.
I lost some of my rare roses (from the wind, 99 degree heat and not being there to water them) Fatalities were Burgundy Iceberg, Julia's Rose, Spellcaster, Ruby Pendant and others.
But I have NOTHING to complain about ... we got out and our kids have a home to come back to .... just a whole lot of cleaning up to do.