ME and Ophelia

Tuesday, October 28, 2003


Eyewitness: 'You cannot breathe'

A few days ago I was thinking about how terrible and terrifying it must be right now for the residents of southern California and, with Californian bloggers in mind, I blogged about the fires (started deliberately last Tuesday) that were sweeping through that part of the US and spreading into Mexico. Just awful.

Yesterday I posted an update that a State of Emergency had been declared, and emailed my favourite Californian blogger James Lee to ask what was happening there with him and his family, friends etc. I wondered how close he was living to all of this and hoped he was far away enough and keeping a close check on the weather and wind reports.

James emailed back, "the fires are down near Los Angeles. That's southern California. I'm near San Francisco which is considered northern California, which is somewhat strange to non-Californians since there is a lot more California to the north of San Francisco.

Anyway, we're about 350 miles north of where the fires are raging. But I know the affected area well. I'm sure a lot of people are in shock and distress. Fires have broken out in the same areas before. This seems a lot worse than some of the other years.

The problem is that a lot of these houses are built in a known fire hazard area. Definitely taking your chances in these areas. There's also a whole bunch of houses in southern California that are in known flood-hazard areas. There's usually no problem but a few years ago, a whole bunch of houses got flooded out."

Thanks for that James. Glad you are safe. If anyone's thinking of moving to California, this post may help decide which areas to avoid settling in!
_ _ _

Happy news update on my NASA postings: The outgoing crew of the International Space Station has arrived safely back on Earth after six months in orbit. NASA spokesman Robert Navias told reporters: "It was a dream landing. It's almost as if they hit an x-mark on the ground." Russian Yuri Malenchenko got married while in space - he was the first person ever to get married in orbit!

# posted by Ingrid J. Jones @ 10/28/2003
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