Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Leaving Home

After figuring out that I couldn't fit half of the rubbish I'd determined I should take into the car, I left it in bags and piles in the house so if the fire department had to break in, they would be puzzled. Was a robbery going on? Had the people just moved in? I mean the art was off the walls and just stacked in odd piles around the living room. All of the photos and art from the two 15' long shelves in the hall had been removed and bagged. Don't ask me why, just don't, okay? I have no flippin' idea why I did that but I did. My suitcase was in the car, filled with mostly unsuitable clothes. Don't ask me where I put my jewelry, because guess what...I forgot all about it and it would have comfortably fit anywhere in the car...anywhere.

Fortunately my daughter advised me as to how to dress when I evacuated the Canyon. She suggested that I wear serious hiking shoes (I guess so that if I had to run over embers, I could do so comfortably). She also advised that I wear all cotton, long pants, long-sleeved shirt and to take wet towels in the car. Just in case. As we were chatting, I sheepishly took off my flipflops and looked down at my bare legs. Yeah, I was wearing shorts.

I was lucky that our gardener was here on Monday as he helped me enormously with blanket wrapping and moving the larger pieces of art down to my car and also to rearrange the file cabinet drawers so we could fit a bit more in. And then Jaime left and my car was facing down the driveway and I needed to do just one more thing before I left. I needed to start the roof sprinkler system and to do that I had to flip a couple of switches at the pool and start the hose so the pool wouldn't empty. The pump would move the water from the pool to the roof and the sprinkler would ensure that the roof would be rainy damp, thus thwarting any possible flying embers that landed up there. It seemed to be working just fine, but as I was talking to Roger on the phone I heard this ominous thunking above my head and then silence. The sprinkler stopped working. Roger suggested that maybe I could climb up there and have a look and I disabused him of any such idea since what was I gonna do. I would say it's not working. He would ask why. I would say I have no effing idea. Shut up. And then we'd start yelling at one another. I told him I needed to go and we could chat later. Don't ask me what I was thinking inside my head, but my thoughts weren't pretty.

I went down and shut the pool hose off and then went for a little wander around my neighborhood. I saw one person, we chatted and talked about how freaky it all was but that was it. Everyone else was gone. I didnt' want to leave, but I didn't like seeing big billows of smoke pushing over the top of the nearest ridges. Piuma and Saddle Peak were burning and that was close. Then I went to change. I guess that the reason I didn't hear the police on their bullhorn telling everyone to evacuate was because I was watching fire coverage on the TV and had a fan running. I was taking my time and didn't leave for another hour. No traffic. None. Not another car. It was great.

Topanga had turned into a huge gated community; a gated community that includes people who live year-round in tents, but still, unpretentiously (very unpretentiously) exclusive! Police were stationed at every road into the Canyon and only residents were allowed on the roads. I, um, liked it...the gated part. I felt really comfortable knowing that Topanga was off-limits to everyone except residents. It made me feel safer and I must confess to liking getting waved through after a dozen cars in front of me were turned away. Who knew I was like this? I didn't.

to be cont.


Post a Comment

<< Home