Sunday, November 16, 2008

Tis the season

For Southern California fires.

I could see this one building, first a grey puff behind the far southern ridge, then throughout the next few hours, increasingly heavier billows of smoke mixing dark purple with the grey as it spread along the ridges. The smoke and ash rose up higher on the horizon until it hit a different current of air, then spread out, orange, purple and brown into the sky. A friend closer to the fire reported it was snowing ash all over his car and driveway.

Driving at night, we could see the sharp orange flames glowing along the ridges and smell the pungent odors. Fire is something so feral and primal that I can see why pyromaniacs start twitching and drooling at this kind of weather: high winds, extremely low humidity, and drought conditions.

Welcome to what global warming will be bringing to a hillside near you.

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