I Moved To Oaxaca

Tuesday, October 28, 2003

My state is on fire. Again.

I don't want to downplay the tragedy of people losing everything they own to a wildfire, or dying in one. It's an awful thing to see and smell. But it happens every year in California, which is made to burn. I remember going outside one summer morning and yelling to my mom that it was snowing. I don't think I'd seen snow at that time in my life. She stood with me on the landing and said it was ash coming down from the mountains. It's quite a sight at night when the mountains are on fire. It's pretty in a way that watching bits of burnt books wafting across your lawn in the daytime is not.

When the Santa Ana winds get going, the state sometimes has to shut the freeways east of LA down to trucks because the winds blow the trucks over. And even though it made an already hot summer almost unbearable, I used to look forward to the Santa Anas because once it'd blown the smog out to sea I could see the beautiful San Gabriel Mountains. They're only a couple of miles from where I grew up, and run between 8,000' and 10,000', but you'd never know it in the summer, when smog completely obsures them. So, yeah, bring on the triple-digit heat and lemme see my mountains, best in the state!


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