Tuesday, October 10, 2017

The Santa Rosa Fires

Reading about The Santa Rosa Fire with a heavy heart.

I know that country pretty well.  I have driven up Highway 12 numerous times to wineries.  For three years I cut across the Napa Valley and over into the Sonoma Valley  as part of mydaily commute.  For a short time, The Ravishing Mrs. TB and I lived just south of there in Rohnert Park.  And even as late as earlier this summer, we drove through the very Northern Section to Jack London State Park and then down to Marin County.

To help you visualize, Santa Rosa is an actual city.  When they talk about the Northern part of the city burning, picture an urban area like any other urban area you know, not some highly spread apart area.  The fact that it has reached into a city like this is shocking.  And the fires over in Napa will, undoubtedly, devastate the wine industry in the area (the one - and only -industry in that area).

At this time, they estimate 10 dead, 20,000 evacuated, and 1,500 structures destroyed - and I am betting that the devastation will go up.

Fire seems different, to me, than the risks of something like a hurricane.  A hurricane we can now see coming some days before it actually arrives.  But a fire can move quickly - terribly quickly - and leave absolutely nothing behind in the blink of an eye.  A lifetime's worth of things and memories and investment and preparation can be gone in an instant.

There are some things that we can prepare for.  And sometimes, there are some things for which we can simply weep.


  1. Yup; I lived in Novato when I was in the Coast Guard, at the old Hamilton Air base. I know that fire area well.

    I'm with you on the "surprise" factor of fires. Living in earthquake country, I live with the fact that it could all go away at any time, on any day...

    As we say in the USCG; Semper paratus... (always ready...)

  2. I used to live in Middletown and we would go thru Calistoga to shop in Santa Rosa. Sad.

  3. Pete - We were almost neighbors (in location, not time). My last year of graduate school/first year of marriage we lived in Novato - actually,not too far from downtown (could never afford to live there now). I do not know if you have been in recent years, but I was there last year for work. Hamilton Field has totally been redone into an upscale housing community.

    Yes, earthquakes are much the same way. Being from that neck of the woods, I know how suddenly they strike.

  4. Tewshooz - I have not been to Middletown for years. Yes I am glad we drove through in the summer. I cannot imagine what it will look like now.

  5. Yup, I know this one all to well. I live up on Cobb Mountain. 7 miles from Middletown. Lost my home in the Valley Fire and moved into my new home earlier this year. Right now I have my car packed, and I am waiting to evac if the fires come over the mountain. This is absolutely devastating.

    I actually rode many of the places that burned just this Sunday. My husband decided that he wanted to go riding and I am so glad we did. I have a picture in my minds eye of just how beautiful this area was. I will treasure this trip forever.

    All I can ask for are thoughts and prayers for those affected.

    Thank you for thinking of us.

    Denise L.

  6. Goodness Denise, the waiting must be incredibly stressful - and twice in a year.

    The pictures I have seen of the remains are awful - and the economic and social impact will be felt for years to come. I really think it is one of the altering events where the after is never like the before. I am glad you have that picture in your mind.

    Prayers Up.


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