We've got plans to make houses safer and a major enquiry will study ways to make the bush safer from fire. But it needs to rain. That's the bottom line. As I walked through the parklands and looked around, I remembered that it all goes back to that basic need. Water. Water to make the plants stay green and water to make our air moist enough that it won't simply burst into flames.
I was reading on mark lawrence's blog the miraculous escape of one of his friends who saw the fire come close:
She told me of how they watched as the very air ignited from the extreme heat and ferocity of the fire. How where as the top of one hill was ablaze, the air at the top of the neighbouring hill suddenly exploded in a ball of flames and set that hill ablaze. The fire was still some 3 kms away or so, sure to destroy their home, and they were prepared to leave when it go too close when the late change came through and started blowing the fire in another direction and their home was saved.I guess the air ignited because of the oils given off by the eucalypts, but I'm not sure.
From another local blog, by Ross Hill, I followed a link to the Boston Globe Big Picture blog, where there are images of the fires. (You might not like to look at number 16.)
To return to our walk in the park...
The first thing I saw was wonderful, a sign that life goes on, one of my all-time favorite birds was sitting in a tree over the creek. (If you click on the picture it will come up larger in another window.)
And the view of the bridge at the bottom of the hill was great.
Then we passed the duck ponds. And that's when I started to feel sad once more. The water is suffering from the lack of rain and its bright green color is a sign of its terrible quality..
As in our own garden, it's now a question of what to save, where to put the precious water. And I'm grateful for the work the rangers are doing to save the historic Chinese Black Mulberries, planted over one hundred and thirty years ago. Big containers of water and a mix of wetting agent drip constantly into the ground.
It's impossible to save all the plants and it's sad to see some trees die.
I was determined to have a more upbeat post today, but I guess it just hasn't happened.
It MUST rain soon!