October 25, 2007
Letter from a dear friend in San Diego..
My dear friend, Chelice just sent this letter to let her friends and family know how she is doing... The letter is very touching and gives a look into what everyone is going through right now in San Diego. Fortunately, she and her doggie, Leo are okay, and Thank God for friends!! We are praying for you all in So. Cal!!
Leo and I are doing fine. We are safe doing our best to focus on the positive! Thanks to all of you near and far for your prayers, good thoughts, and well wishes. I am writing on generic email to keep everyone updated.
Here’s the scoop…
Monday night my neighbor knocked on my bedroom window at 3:30am to tell me it was time to evacuate. The entire horizon was on fire. I was scared, but took immediate action to get the ‘h-e-double toothpicks’ outta there! My back window faces east, so from north to south all I could see was fire. It was like molten lava running down San Miguel mountain. It seemed so close, almost like I could throw a rock and hit it. Anyway, it was about 4miles away. But, for me that was too close. I dressed, grabbed Leo and we left. I had already packed my truck before going to bed.
I drove to the gas station and just sat there, in shock trying to figure out what to do. The smoke was very heavy with smoke, thick like peanut butter. Leo just stared at it, as if he was shocked too. After sitting at the station for a few minutes, I collected my thoughts and drove downtown San Diego.
I stopped at a Starbuck’s and the girl at the counter said, “Hi, good morning, how are you?” I burst into tears. I didn’t expect to cry, but I did and the girl came and gave me a hug. She guessed I just evacuated, by the mask on my face! Anyway, she was very nice and gave me a free cup of coffee. There are many stories of kindness, it is unbelievable. It is beautiful to see people uniting and truly helping each other. Anyway, after that I drove to my friend Randi’s house which is just three block from the beach. Compared to where I came from in Bonita, the beach area was clear and refreshing. I sat outside my friends house in my truck for a couple hours just thinking. There’s nothing like a life threatening emergency to help one prioritize.
Anyway, we stayed in Ocean Beach until today Wednesday with Randi, who is a greatly appreciated friend ( she even loves Leo and left him sit on her sofa). After leaving my Randi’s house, I went to my other friend Kate’s house to wish her happy birthday. Leo and I visiting with her for the afternoon. Kate had two families who had also been evacuated from there homes staying with her. She also had two evacuated dogs with her, so Leo was happy to have playmates. We went out to lunch to celebrate Kate’s birthday. It was nice to laugh with friends and forget the fires for a minute.
The fires are huge. NO, I mean HUGE! Smoke everywhere, the air stinks. We are not suppose to use our cell phone except for emergencies. We are supposed to conserve water and electricity. Boil water is encouraged. Some people are still out and about. Some people are still going to work. My school is closed until at least Monday. I went to the grocery store today, people are being so nice to each other. Each community is different, we have so many micro-climates, so one area is clear, the next is black with smoke and soot.
Leo and I are thinking good thoughts. We are trying focus on the positive. I understand that the aftermath; pollution, destruction, chemicals in the air, effect on the food crops in southern California, and the run-ff into the ocean, etc. of these fires will be huge on the physical, emotional, and even spiritual health of the people, animals and earth, but, for now, I am fine, well, and thankful; doing my best to be positive. My health is good and my attitude is great. I have cried already and now looking forward.
I suppose what makes this difficult for me is that I am in the middle of moving my home. This Saturday my friend Hugo from Arizona is coming in to help me move the furniture and big stuff. Thank God for Hugo! I hope the air will be clear so we can breathe well while moving. Another good lesson from these fires is that I have too much STUFF! I plan to down size big time. I have been really to live the philosophy that less is more and this is now the perfect opportunity for me to practice what I believe. When I had to put only the important stuff in my truck to evacuate, I decided what I needed and don’t need.
Okay, I know, I have rambled on and on here. I suppose I just needed to get it all out. Leo and I are exhausted. I don’t know what you are seeing on tv. But, it really is a terrible emergency, national disaster. Bonita has so many horses. The poor horses have had to breathe the bad air, lots of animals. The Home Depot and other large stores have turned there parking lots into animal evacuation centers. One million people have evacuated there homes. I am guessing that many animals also. It is bigger than I can describe.
PRAY FOR RAIN PLEASE. WISH FOR RAIN. THINK OF RAIN. DO A RAIN DANCE FOR US! It is not over. It is better in my community, but the fires are still raging in so many other places. It is so smoking outside that I cannot see the mountain to see where the fire burned.
That’s it. I love you all! We are well.
Chelice and Leo