I was just catching a quick news update on my way back from taking my big kids to school (about 8:00 am). In case you haven't heard, much of Southern California is on fire today. A number of homes have been burned, thousands of people have been evacuated, and there have been multiple injuries and two deaths. So far the fires are to the North, South and West of us. While we are praying for them to be put out ASAP, we are praying even harder that our area stays fire free. Just like most of So Cal, we live in a high risk area. We experienced evacuation and fire damage at our old house four years ago. It was very scary, and we have no desire to repeat the experience.
Anyway, back to the newscast I was listening to. The reporter dutifully covered the latest statistics on each of the fires. She told us that SEVEN counties in California have been declared disaster areas so far. She then moved on to traffic. Traffic on a Monday in Southern California can be rather dicey under the best of circumstances. Throw in some Santa Ana winds, and a whole lot of smoke, and things get downright ugly. After reporting at least 6 different accidents along one 50 mile stretch of freeway, and covering the freeways that were closed due to fire, she moved on to the weather report.
The reporter, with her lovely English accent, told us that we are in for EXTREMELY low humidity, increased winds and soaring temperatures for the next two days. In fact, we will be under a "Red Flag Warning" for at least the next two days. For those of you that aren't familiar with that term, it is sort of like the Department of Homeland Security changing the "level" to RED. In terms of fire danger, it doesn't get any worse than that. Next, however, came my favorite part. It was time for the newscaster to talk about our current, local conditions. Here is the report, word for word.
"It is 68 degrees in the town just North of us, and 62 degrees in 5McCKidTown. Winds are gusting up to 80 mph, and there are (and I quote) hazy, sunny, debris laden, sandy skies."
Even the professional, stiff upper lip, English lady could not help but comment, "Now that's a new one!!"