first off: andrew and i are safe and sound and so blessed to have been able to stay in our little home. however, many others were not so lucky.
over thirty-two thousand evacuated
over one thousand firefighters fighting the flames
hundreds of homes destroyed by fire
six thousand acres up in smoke
predicted to be contained july fourteenth, still weeks away
it is truly a tragedy.
on saturday the flames began in the forest, and they thought all the homes would be safe
it was crazy to see smoke billowing from the mountains just miles away, literally all day long.
tuesday there were major shifts in the winds and suddenly the fire began overtaking the neighborhoods up in the mountains, then more wind shifts caused the flames to spread every which way and people began to be evacuated left and right.
i worked all day tuesday and there was a period from about 1-4 when you literally couldn't see out the windows because it was so smoky, and no one came into the restaurant. our view from work..
smoke was everywhere.
it was so eerie to see the sun glowing red from behind the smoky clouds.
after a few hours of smoky-awfulness it began to clear a bit and the restaurant was hit... mostly by evacuees with no where else to go. i began to worry if i would even have a home to go back to after hearing that they had evacuated all the way up to air force academy, which is right across the freeway from us.
we kept taking quick breaks to run outside and see how the fire spread, and as i drove home from work the mountainside was dotted with spots of orange all over. i realized that they were homes burning. it honestly just made me sick inside to know that people were watching their homes burn down and nothing could be done about it.
(picture from denverpost.com)
once anj and i were home we turned on the news and just saw picture after picture of the devastating fire. we kept the news on in case any pre-evacuation notifications were sent our way, considering the fire was right across the freeway. the winds had shifted the fire more southernly, so for the moment we figured we were probably safe. nevertheless, we started putting items we knew we wanted to save in a laundry basket in case the notice came.
it was really interesting to have to think about what we would take with us if we were told to evacuate, knowing that whatever we left behind might never be seen again. many only had minutes to gather what few precious items they could as the winds sent the fire raging into the previously safe neighborhood.
the blueish area is the mandatory evacuated area and the yellow star is where anj and i live.
we left the t.v. on for quite some time and when they talked about how they weren't sure if the main highway I-25 could even break a fire of this magnitude i got a little nervous.. (we are right on the other side of that highway) but after saying a prayer with anj i felt comforted and was grateful to know that if we did have to evacuate i would be able to be with what is most important.. my sweet husband.
i truly do feel so blessed for the safety we have been able to have as this fire rages so close-by, and for all of those willing to help fight the fire; many homes have been lost, but many were also saved. my heart aches for those who have lost their homes, and i am so grateful to have comfort and safety at this time. what a reality check to be so close to a real live natural disaster! the fire has been partially contained and people are beginning to return to their homes, but we need some rain, so send a prayer for colorado springs our way.
thanks for all the love and support.