Thursday, September 14, 2006

smoke in the canyon

Well, the wind has picked up today in advance of this storm system that is moving in -cooler weather, can you give me Hallelujia??!!- but it has just pulled the smoke from the fire in Castaic right down the freeway and now our canyon is full of smoke again.

The day after the fire started, and for a couple of days after that we had choking smoke all through the mountain. Frazier Park was filled as well and we had to close the house up because of my asthma. The kid's schools were on rainy day schedule, no one was allowed outside. Looks like we will be in the same boat again.

I always worry about the alpacas, I mean it's not like they can go in the house and close the doors! It is so hard as a ranch owner to worry and wonder about them, and not be able to do a darned thing about it! This makes the fourth fire this year that has been too close for comfort. Hmmm.... can we get ARF to do a study on the effects of long term smoke on alpaca's lungs? They work with the Phillip Morris Foundation after all....
-- woo hoo and she's off and running!!--

This year has been a particularly bad fire year. We had a very scary one right in our canyon in July, where the fire fighters basically said, "Go in your house, close your windows, and we'll make sure your house doesn't burn down."
First we were going to have to evacuate, then we couldn't because it was burning right up the road. What's scarier? Having to evacuate, or being told you can't??

Ranch ownership puts a whole new kink in evacuation. In the beginning......
we only had a few alpacas, they all fit into our tiny trailer and between the pacas, the dog and the cat we were fine! It went like clockwork in our practice runs....

Fast forward to now, over 20 alpacas, 2 dogs, 5 cats, a turtle, various fish, 10 chickens and a partridge in a pear tree and our "practice runs" look like a Laurel and Hardy movie!
Hem-hem,,, it went something like this:

"How many alpacas did you say would fit in the back of the truck?" asks my hubby.
"Well, in theory we could cram about 5 in there, but add Luxor to the mix, and the number drops to 2."
"What group does Osita go in??"
"She has to go in the 'pacas- that- are-under-4 -years- old-and-play-well-with-others group!!" I ramble out, "Can't you see I'm busy trying to figure out where Jack -aka: The Dog (who is really a cat) will fit? He can't go with Diane, she hates him, Shadow's too fat, he takes up a whole carrier by himself and the dogs won't let him ride in the front seat with them they say he hogs the window!!"

Oh yes, we are looking forward to the 'dry run' we have set up for October.... I'll have a friend video tape it. We should be able to make some big bucks off of that one......

Last week my daughter asked me if she could get a parakeet. I think she has forgotten that idea though, I heard her calling out a while later: "Daddy!!! Mom's scaring me, she hasn't blinked in 20 minutes!!!"

I was just trying to figure out what group 'Budgie' would fit in!!

Here's a picture of the fire on our road this year- we just tell people they are visiting a previously unknown volcano site....


Gattina said...

Seems to me as a holiday place ! I am living in a country where it rains all the time and little "fires" compared what you have happen once in a blue moon.
It's more in the southern countries like Portugal or Spain.

Rachelle Black said...

I wanna live there!! Where are you .... LOL
Is it green and beautiful? *sigh*

I guess we all want to be where we're not at times huh?

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