We are currently in a drought that is so bad it beat the record back in 1930. So, it hasn't been this bad since the 1930's, which equals approximately 70 years. It's almost like the Dust Bowl Days, which is really scary.
We've now been put on mandatory water rationing. Luckily, we have a water well, which makes us exempt from the yard watering schedule. Thank goodness. We lost enough trees, shrubs, and plants from that last bitterly cold spell we had last winter. We lost like 50% of what we had out in the yard. It even killed a trumpet vine. You can't kill trumpet vine, I swear. Obviously, Mother Nature can.
On our local TV channels, we are receiving full coverage on the fires and many areas have now been evacuated. Most of the homes that have been evacuated are the million dollar homes just outside of town in a private gated community. I knew I never wanted to live in the country for a reason; I just never knew it was because of wildfires.
Historic Ft. Davis county (south of us by a few hours drive) is afire as well. In fact, it was just reported that Ft. Davis is now out of water so they can no longer fight fires. To make matters worse, the town now has no electricity and night has come. Our daughter went to girl scout camp and later, horse camp just outside Ft. Davis and we have always just loved the area.
Actually, my brother and I both went to camp where my daughter and son went to camp many years later. Prude Ranch (I've known the Prude family practically my entire life and wish I could be there to help), the MacDonald Observatory, Mitre Peak, the historic Hotel Limpia and countless others are in severe danger. There are lots of ranches all over West Texas and the Permian Basin, that are all in very precarious danger at this point. The Ft. Davis mountains area is incredibly beautiful, so I'm finding it hard to imagine what is happening there.
They just announced that Interstate 20 has been closed because of heavy smoke from the fires. Evidently, it's so thick that you can't see to drive through it. This same time last year, we were having flooding rains like we've never seen before. Go. Figure. Another *cycle*, no doubt.
Because we have so many pump jacks bringing oil up from the depths of the earth, it increases the fire danger, as in explosive conditions, not to mention gas pipelines, propane tanks, power poles down, etc . There are even fire fighters coming to help from other communities in Texas and New Mexico. Many roads are closed all around our area, which is flat out scary. When I went outside to pot some plants earlier in the evening I could barely breathe, so I had to come back inside. We have lots of friends who have ranches all over the place, so I know they are worried about their livestock, barns, pets and homes. Unfortunately, the wind doesn't seem to be letting up any and our humidity is now the highest it's been all day, at 30%.
Now here's the really unbelievable part of the whole deal. There is a huge cold front coming tonight, carrying with it... lightening storms. This is so unbelievable. It's actually snowing in Las Vegas, NEW MEXICO, which is behind the dry front and in the middle of the cold front of storms. What could possibly happen next? As I write, the winds have shifted from east to west, making it even more troublesome for firefighters, land owners and home owners. So far, over 15,000 acres have burned with a fire-line that goes for a total of 38 miles.
Thankfully, the US Forest Service has brought in Air Tankers to help but I do hope they brought their own liquids. They are saying on the news that this is the worst time we've ever had with fires since 1939 (the days of the Dust Bowl Era). That's Dear Lord, please take mercy on us and send us some rain. If You can't do that then perhaps You can at least stop the 45 mph wind gusts. Please. Amen....