Saturday, February 7th, 2009

We are prepared for a forecasted day of dense sweltering heat. Temperatures in excess of 48 degrees are on tap. Although I love the heat, I am also keenly aware that with forecasted winds of 100 kilometres per hour, this is heat that presents a very serious risk for fire. It goes without saying that today is yet another Total Fire Ban day. If only everybody would heed the request.

On a day like today, every action we might take for granted is re-evaluated. You don’t drive unless you have to, especially if you are driving across a field or grassy area, where the heat of your exhaust alone is enough to start a grass fire. And once a simple grass fire is started, trouble begins. We are in one of the driest countries in the world, in the midst of a 10 year drought, and with unprecedented high and dry temperatures.

2:20pm

We spot plumes to the west of Taggerty, the small town close to where we live. We watch them grow and billow with amazing speed. We take pictures.

2:30pm

A friend who works for the DSE (Department of Sustainability & Environment – the government body that among other things fights wildland fires) pulls up to chat with us. We hear on his radio that the fire fighters in the Toolangi forest where the plumes are coming from need a change of underwear. This is getting ugly.

2:45pm

We pack up all the essentials into our car as a precaution. Laptops and passports are essential. We drive away thinking about all the things we should have packed. However we don’t really fuss about it too much since we figure we are still being cautious.

 

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  • Nora Dunn

    In 2006, Nora sold everything she owned in Canada (including a busy financial planning practice) to embrace her dreams of full-…

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