I live in the forested mountains of Northern California. It is nearing the Fourth of July. When it’s not a time of Covid, we have a huge influx of tourists (around 3,000 people) to celebrate the holiday. It’s been fun in the past. However, due to the virus, the event was cancelled. Honestly, it’s a relief for many reasons. One being, the long term drought in California. The tinder-dry forested area isn’t a place for fireworks. (It’s hard to believe that they allow fireworks in such an area!)
A few days ago, when I noticed the Safe and Sane Fireworks Booth going up by the local supermarket, I felt myself tense up. Honestly, I cannot believe that a mountainous area would ever sell fireworks and permit their use. This shows a great disconnect. We’ve had several years where we’ve been living on pins and needles as forest fires have encroached. We’ve lived with months of intense smoke that obliterated the usual pristine vistas. We’ve been prepared to evacuate should the fires get any closer. We’ve watched neighboring communities be forced to evacuate and witnessed a complete town, Paradise, CA, succumb to fires. And not too far south of us, in Redding, CA where my sisters live, I stood watch with them hoping that the Carr Fire would be contained, controlled and put out!
I wrote to my local City Council expressing my concerns. The sale of fireworks has been a profitable fundraiser for a local club. It’s been done this way for awhile–sort of entrenched system that I’m coming up against. Safe and Sane Fireworks, according to the local Fire Chief, have not caused problems…it’s been the illegal ones that cause harm.
Regardless, my bottom line is that fireworks of any type should be banned in forested areas! Does that seem like common sense to you? It does to me. Better foresight than hindsight.
She just knows
© by Christine O’Brien
She looks upon the land and she just knows
That things could be much better than they are.
we day tripping visitors blink and doze
While wise ones see into the future, far.
When hindsight and foresight fall by the way
And the many lessons offered aren’t learned
As media hype says what it may
Through promoting fear, their paychecks are earned.
What else is new across this span of strife?
Humans burying their heads in the sand
We hear past echoes and we join the chime
“we can’t make a difference, one small life.”
Remember, holding hands, we are many.
Infused with earth love, we are not puny.