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"Life doesn't have to be perfect to be wonderful."
- Unknown

"That which does not kill you, makes you stronger."
- Handed down through the ages.

"Life's tough. It's even tougher when you're stupid."
- John Wayne

19 May 2007 Update

So . . . where we were? It's been so long!

Ah, yes: the fire. As of today, the fire has been burning for 2 weeks and is up to 75,851 acres (give or take) . . . and all, as I said before, from one little campfire. About half of the fire is burning in Canada now (which makes me wonder what kind of bill they're going to send to us in the good ol' US of A?)!

Until about 5-7 days ago, we spent many an evening nervously watching the western hills from our livingroom window or deck. This is the view of the fire's plume a week ago yesterday. (And
don't think for a second that I didn't call our insurance man to confirm that we were covered for forest fires!) Since then, the temperatures have - blissfully - dropped (matter of fact, it's snowing as I write this!), and the southwesterly winds have pushed the fire into Canada instead of east (as it had been moving) towards us. Bad for them, good for us.

As a result of the extremely (explosively!) dry conditions, many people have stopped using their wood stoves and/or furnaces, including us. We turned the Central Boiler off for the season last weekend . . . but that means that we are now without heat since the in-floor heat was maintained BY the wood-fired Central Boiler. All we have to provide heat in the house is the wood cookstove in the kitchen, but we can't and won't use that, either, unless it's a rainy day (again, because the conditions are so horrible that "a spark has an 80% chance of igniting", so say the Powers That Be).

FORTUNATELY, today dawned rainy and unusually cold. And, with the house sitting at a chilly 62 degrees for the last couple of days, you can bet I fired that puppy up! On the down side, the heat hasn't moved into the rest of the house (here, in my office, I'm sitting with a heating pad on full blast to keep the tremors at bay), but the kitchen was cozy today. So, by default, I got a lot of work done in there that had been long overdue.

As I said before, at a balmy temperature of 33.4 degrees outside, it's snowing as I write and has been doing so, off and on, all day. Fine by me: that makes for GOOD fire-fighting weather!

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