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Blog

Goats and Blazing Infernos

Amber Adrian

I don’t know if you’ve had any reason to look at the California fire maps recently, but if you have, you might notice that a large portion of Sonoma county is currently on fire.

Since we live right on the edge of the evacuation zone, our household has expanded from two humans and two felines to nine humans, four felines, and two canines. Which is two canines more than our cats find appropriate or acceptable.

The three evacuated equines are being housed elsewhere, luckily. But we did go visit with an entire bag of carrots.

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Much happier, post-carrot.

It was my brother’s job to fight forest fires, about ten years before the California wildfires went biblical. His job description sounded like my literal definition of hell: Hike ten miles into the wilderness with all your equipment on your back, and then face a blazing inferno, knowing that it’s in your job description to deal with said inferno.

We’re now in the third year in a row of epic, once-in-a-lifetime wildfires. Hundreds of thousands of people have been evacuated, more are without power, and the fires are still raging. I’m glad it’s not my brother’s job to deal with this any more, but the people who’s job it still is are battling hard.

All the guidance I’ve been getting lately says celebrate. Which seems a bit tricky under the circumstances, both logistically and ethically. But maybe that’s the very best time to celebrate - when all circumstances appear to point you in the other direction.

So Here’s Some Celebration. And a Picture of a Goat.

This morning, we learned that one of the houses we feared had burned down is still standing - an actual miracle, given that it’s smack in the middle of multiple fires. So all the people staying with us will probably have homes to return to. We still have power, when much of the region doesn’t. Other people made dinner last night, and when I woke up this morning, the dishes were already done. And I got to meet goats!

Who quickly lost interest in me when it was determined that I had given all the carrots to the horses.

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Unimpressed.