Thursday, October 25, 2007

Bush fires are not just Down Under


Growing up in Australia, I'd always had the impression that bush fires were a particularly Aussie icon. It's a bit like the way I once thought that Cornflakes were Australian, I guess, and then I was positively shocked to discover them in other countries when I traveled.

Turns out I was wrong. Imagine that! This week the news has been full of the fires raging through southern California and it's made a bigger impact on me than the normal headlines because it's also affecting the area where my mother used to live in Murrieta, and where her friends still do (we're thinking of you). After reading an email full of fire jumping the highway, blinding smoke and offices closed because no staff can reach them, I feel quite grateful to be here in suburban Perth where bush fires usually only threaten the outer suburbs and I'm reasonably unlikely to have to live through a fire evacuation. On top of that, it just goes to show that traveling's not the only way to live dangerously: sometimes staying home can be just as risky.

Photo from San Diego County. Thanks to synecdoche via Creative Commons license.

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