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Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Wildfires

Due to a drought we're having, Florida has erupted into wildfires in central and east Florida (that means the Tampa Bay Area is severely affected). I'm sitting here in a face mask while I blog at my computer.

It's so odd to experience this: Forest fires in Florida are a rarity, and because we are so flat, with water bordering on all sides, any type of pollutants blow away quickly. They say that this will be gone by about 10AM this morning.

Some of this probably originated in Georgia, where the state's largest recorded wildfire has consumed over 100,000 acres. Many people near the Georgia border in Tallahassee (our capital) have been evacuated. Evacuations have also been ordered in the Gainesville area (home of the University of Florida) and in the Lake County area in the center of the state.

Right now conditions are critical. We have a bad mix of very windy conditions and very dry land. I was excited about the winds yesterday (I planned to sail today) but this morning it isn't fit to be outdoors.

16 comments:

Ted said...

I wish we could send you guys some rain. It is flooding here. Last year we had wildfires all summer

downtown guy said...

I always figured Florida'd finally go in a flood, but if we don't get some rain soon the whole state's gonna burn flat.

United We Lay said...

I hope you guys are okay. If you ever decide to move it north to wait it out, you have a place to stay in PA, though I reccommend coming up in Augus for the Folk Fest.

Ed Abbey said...

I always thought of Florida as a lush jungle type place. But the last three visits have shown much of it is actually an arid climate. During two of my three visits, there have been major fires in Florida.

Hans said...

Ed- They drained the swamps down here so they could have a place to build more houses. So that people from up North could move down here, clog up the roads, have a place to live and tell us how great things are up North.

Matt said...

It's just one big cracka box down there!

Daniel Hoffmann-Gill said...

I'm sure the facemask is a good look...

QUASAR9 said...

Hi Saur, amazing really
we can create electricity for millions (billions) of homes, we can destroy hundreds of thousands of homes with one mighty bang, we can control the weather (cloud busting) - yet we are helpless before a forest fire or a hurricane, tsunami or storm.

Batton down the hatches, in a storm
and pray that the fire will cause enough particles to bring down the rain.
It is said the great Bush fires in Australia cannot be put out by man
One can only wait for the Rain.

QUASAR9 said...

Hope you got your chance to go sailing, or get it real soon.

The Lazy Iguana said...

Holy shit! You are not kidding.

Miami is currently blanketed in smoke. It is thick here. And the fires are not really that close.

The low level haze is amazing. I would say visibility is maybe three miles.

jsull28fl@yaho said...

saur,
I live in Madison about 1/2 way between Tally and Gainesville and I havent heard of a evac.
That doesnt mean it isnt so just that I havent heard it. I did hear there were fires now in Fl.
Thats bad. Hope ur area is ok
js

Tea & Margaritas in My Garden said...

Sending prayers that they get those fires out. How terrifying!

tea
xo

Saur♥Kraut said...

Tea&Margaritas, Thanks, hon. It really made me do a lot of thinking yesterday. It's strange how dependant we are on clean air, and how easy it is to mess that up. As Quasar said, we've mastered so many things and yet can't master forest fires!

JSull, I hadn't heard of them either, until yesterday.

Lazy, Horrible, isn't it??? They say that if you do anything outdoors (such as running) it's equivalent to smoking a pack of cigarettes!

Quasar, it looks as if I'll be sailing on the weekend only. :P Ah well, work must come first. My opportunity was lost yesterday. What you said is very true, sadly: We can do so little.

Daniel, stylin' and profilin'! ;o)

Matt, ;o)

Hans, bravo! So true. Dittos to that, all the way. :D

Ed, see Hans' comment. I can't do any better than that. At one time, the city of Clearwater actually had clear water. And there was lush land everywhere. But... no more. If airconditioning hadn't been invented, however, no one would live here. That's the honest truth! Airconditioning is the primary reason that Florida's been developed.

UWL, I may just take you up on that some day! Be careful what you offer. ;o)

Downtown Guy, very true. When we were kids, it rained regularly! No more! I checked out your blog, BTW, and will keep checking back. It's always nice to find another native.

Ted, I know! As we sit in a drought, we hear of flooding elsewhere. Ironic, at best.

United We Lay said...

Regardless, the offer stands. If you feel like coming to DC to participate in a protest against the war on Monday, May 14th, we're not too far and we're going anyway, so you're more than welcome. They are VERY QUIETLY sending 35,000 more troops to Iraq because the troop surge is apparently working SO well.

The Lazy Iguana said...

Why cant a huge patch of 50,000 acres of pot catch on fire and the smoke blow down here. That would be interesting to see. What would happen? Would they have to cancel all drug tests for the next month or two?

And at least I would get a buzz or something out of the mess.

Saur♥Kraut said...

Lazy Iguana, *LOL* I mean, really *LOL*! :D

UWL, It is actually very tempting but I have no easy way to get there short of driving like a red-eyed lunatic for days. I wish! I'll be with you in spirit, though. Unless you know of some cheap airfare. Then we need to drag some others along, too, like Lazy.