It's in the air... we can't see it, but we are breathing in the smoke. Our cars and yards are covered in ash... our eyes burn and our throats sting. School has been canceled, roads are closed and we are closing our windows and turning on the fans. The news plays endlessly in the background.
There is an almost palpable nervous tension crackling around us... a heightened sense of awareness and a subtle aroma of panic.
Over a dozen fires rage in southern California. My mother in law has been evacuated and is on her way...
I have gassed up the car, and parked it "nose out" in the driveway and have methodically been adding items to a tote bag by the front door: dog food, medication, photo albums, a change of clothes for everyone.
Just in case.
*** update ***
So far, so good... a breeze began in Laguna yesterday afternoon and blew out most of the smoke and ash and nothing has started or come closer... still nerve wracking but ok.
*** update 2.0, Wednesday ***
Ugh, today is miserable as we are on the receiving end of the smoke and soot from the Camp Pendleton as fire well as the Santiago/Modjeska Canyon blaze... the sky resembles a factory town in China, bright, but you can't really see the sun... we are covered in ash.
But still, we are safe, we have our home and our things... our precious things... drawings and cards and photos and silly stuffed animals... things that I don't need, but which I am so very glad to have.