Here come those Santa Ana Winds again

After last week’s little post on the fires, new ones have started – the closest one being the Getty fire. I haven’t been writing so much lately, but put this text up on facebook and adding it here now too ♥

There was a time when, to me, “Santa Ana winds” were just three little words, that more than anything would have me start humming on a good old Steely Dan-song. These last three falls in LA has totally changed that (although all the talk of these particularly dry winds still makes me hum a bit, every time….”Here come those Santa Ana winds agai-i-in…dum, dum tu-ru-tu, tu-ru tu…). But nowadays these words are also a part of the vocabulary that involves other expressions like “red flag conditions”, “single digit humidity”, “pack your belongings, follow the news and be ready to leave” – and the breathing of air full of ash and who knows what, leaving a burning feeling in the back of my throat. Basically, it’s fire season, again.
Most Angelenos I meet seem totally “cool” about it though, in their own way. I’m not. Not in the sense that I’m panicking away or anything…but just the knowledge of the ravaging fires, so close, is…upsetting, on more than one emotional level. There is compassion, of course, for all those directly affected by the fires, people losing their homes and belongings, and last year quite a few their actual lives, up north. There is fear, for the fires that can so so easily spread in such an unpredictable way, and for the smoke we are all breathing in even at a distance. This smoke is not just like any wildfire-smoke – it’s a smoke also full of the stuff a burning “normal” home full of plastics and electronics and what not emits. There is anger, when thinking about the shere consumerism that lies behind that particular fact. There is frustration, thinking about the building of houses in the fire hazard zones we all know are going to burn, sooner or later. And, the big one of course. The daunting thoughts around the climate change that is already here, changing the ways those fires behave, as a very in-our-face-way to show itself being not a thing in the future nor in a distance, but something happening right here and now.
And yet, so many people seemingly don’t care. Something that puzzles me so much, right now. I mean I get it too, it’s uncomfortable and it’s so easy to feel paralyzed by it all. But anything is better than nothing and awareness is always a step one. Last year I was sitting with those same feelings, as Malibu was on fire, and re-reading what I wrote then I see that I have things to follow up on, myself (if I want to walk the walk – and I surely do). Feel free to join in!
For friends and family far away, thanks for thinking of us over here – I am safe and not so close to today’s new fire as to be directly threatened by it (I was traveling south on the 405 a few hours before the fire started though, and would have had a hard time to get home if I had stayed longer where I was, so in that sense it is all very close to home. But not close-close). Anna is still in Sweden and Birgitta is at home in the Valley and well, too (as I was staying at her place last Thursday we got a “pack up and be prepared”-warning though, as a brush fire had started close by, but thankfully that one didn’t grow too big).
Take care everyone 



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