It’s now been several week since the fires, and life is shaking down into a “new normal”. Whatever that means, and wherever I go from here, I don’t know, but I at least now have the desire to read a book and begin commenting on and reading blog posts.
But first, life update! My parents have temporarily moved into my house, and are contemplating a move out of state (to Colorado where my brother lives). Since I work full time, and am taking 2 JC classes (Photoshop and Web Development), plus dealing with all the fire stuff, I’ve had to put this blog on hold for a bit. I had a big backlog of books that I had read before the fires, but hadn’t gotten around to typing up my reviews yet (whoopsie…) and so since it has been so long since I’ve thought about the titles I read, instead of doing a full review for the books I’ll just do book spotlights with a brief (very brief) statement of my thoughts on the books. ARCs will continue to have full reviews, and I hope to be back to writing full reviews soon, although realistically I might not be able to get back to writing full reviews until after Christmas. We shall see!
Now to some sad news, we were finally able to go look at the remains of my parents home and start looking through the ashes for anything that survived, but the fires burned so hot that almost nothing was savable. We’d see an intact teacup or plate, and get excited, only to have it shatter when we picked it up. We were able to get some of the yard art out, mostly smaller metal decor that could withstand the heat.
My parents had scores of books – novels, art books, history books, collector vintage books, etc, and nothing survived. We found a small scrap of a family member’s death certificate (still blows me away that somehow within all the paper my parents had that THAT was a scrap that survived), and a tiny burned image from an art book, but no photos survived. We had hopes that a metal box of WWII letters had survived, but those were all burned, too. The letters were written by my grandfather’s brother, and they detailed his life during the war. He was killed about a month before WWII ended.
On the first day we could get in to the ashes, we donned white hazmat suits, N95 masks, gloves, protective eye wear, and heavy boots to protect ourselves from the toxic atmosphere. Oddly enough, my parents had a freezer in their garage that was full of frozen meat, and there were a few chicken wings that didn’t burn. Makes me wonder what was in those chicken wings!
Now we wait for toxic and debris cleanup. Options are to have the city do it, or to hire someone who is qualified to do it. There are a lot of decisions to be made, pros and cons of everything, and it will be a long road for Santa Rosa to recover from the Tubbs fire, as we lost 2,800 structures, most of those structures being homes.
Thanks again for all of the thoughts and well wishes. I am anxious to return to the blog-o-sphere and this has certainly made me realize how much I love my little blog and the book blogging community!