Showing posts with label elements. Show all posts
Showing posts with label elements. Show all posts

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Harvey is Not the Nation's Only Disaster

          Every time I sign onto facebook, I have been invited to donate to the relief fund for Harvey - as I'm sure all facebook users have.  I have never dealt with the aftermath of a hurricane or earthquake or tornado and hope I will never have to.  I don't know what it's like - but it sounds horrible.  It looks horrible.  I know that there are many who are suffering.  I'm certain that the current situation in Houston Texas is worse than my own in Myrtle Creek. 

          I do know what it's like to be surrounded by cold winds and how heavy snow can get.  I have had a small taste of a heat-wave.  I can deal with mold better than some.  I can actually better deal with strong and unpleasant odors as I have lost my sense of smell - although I can smell the smoke as it lingers through any air holes it may find - the opening and closing of the door.  It is awful. I do know what it's like to struggle to breathe in smoke-filled or polluted air.  I feel for the asthmatic.

          I called Biff's mother-in-law who has already lost three  children to health issues.  Two boys have survived - one in Texas, one in Washington.  The one in Texas had been evacuated before Harvey came.  They returned to debris outside of their home.  Miraculously the inside remained unharmed.  She thinks the other is alright as well and has plans for talking with him later this afternoon.  I don't know if the air quality his family is breathing compares to ours. 

          There have been countless news stories about specific fires and many with several fires.  You can read just a few here, here, here and here.  Or you can Google your own search.  Fires have been burning most of the summer (if not all of it)

          I have been hearing the helicopters, but not seeing them.  I wonder how they are able to see.  Or perhaps I'm not really hearing them.  It just became a common sight and so I just think I hear them.

           I came to Oregon for the clean moist air.  It has disappeared along with the mountains and sky.  But I'm sure I would have headaches and coughing in Salt Lake as well.  The boys have a cousin who is unable to breathe due to asthma and fire/smoke combination in another county.  I have a brother-in-law who has probably been affected by the smoke from the same fire as he also works in an area the smoke has lingered.  It was worse at Church than it is in the house. Good testimony meeting though.

         These are various pictures I have taken of the same mountain that can't be seen at this time:

          I had an instructor post: Assignments due; if you have been affected by Harvey, arrangements can be made!  Please let us know.  That is very thoughtful to consider those who may have been evacuated, for those cleaning up, for those who possibly aren't able to sign on and see the message because of the situation. 

Harvey isn't the only natural disaster that has taken place. 


Saturday, September 2, 2017

Do You Think We’ll Have To Evacuate?

          We saw deer all the time after we first moved to Oregon.  They had wandered into the city to escape the fires that were burning their homes in the forest.  I don’t recall having seen as many deer in the last two years combined.  The fires seem greater this year than in 2015.

          Shortly after our move to Oregon, I made up three evacuation bags. We kept them in the closet door right next to the front door. I felt quite fortunate that we’ve never had to use them.

          When we moved again, Roland added to the evacuation bags making them three times as heavy. Because of their weight and a extremely small closet, they no longer seem as convenience to get to.  We found five can openers among our garage sale treasures.  I figured we had enough that we could put one in each bag (as all three bags contain canned goods) but haven’t had the desire for moving the heavy bags.  Currently they are sitting on top of the vacuum cleaner which has also been stuffed into the closet.

          Tri City lies between Riddle and Myrtle Creek.  Riddle was at a number two evacuation when I first created this post - now they're at a number three - at least nine houses in Riddle - but apparently not the entire city of Riddle as they are currently using the elementary school as refuge.  I wonder how long that will last.

          Yesterday was the our day at the pool until next year.  We went to Winston today and then to Roseburg. The sky was gone - or that is how it appeared anyway.  Like God had erased the sky and we were looking at a blank whitish-grey canvas. I remember thick fogs in winter that settled over houses in Salt Lake City.  It was always cold.  It looks like it should be cold outside, but it's not.  It's hot and it is smoky.  On the return back to Myrtle Creek, it appeared that more of the scenery was slowly being erased away.  I took these pictures:

          It is highly possible that Tri City could evacuate if the rest of the entire city of Riddle is asked to leave.  The temperature forecast says it may get to 108 today.  108?!?! September should never be this hot. Planet Earth should never be this hot!  Why can’t we sent some heat down to Houston to dry up the floods and have them send us their rain to put out the fires?  Why can’t we have a happy balance?  I came to Oregon in order to breathe better.  Not happening right now.  We need moisture to clean out our gunky air.

Friday, September 1, 2017

The Fires are Closer than I had Thought

    Miss Jenna is off for the next four days after having gone to school for three.  Why not just start school on the 5th? 
    I left the window open last night.  Big mistake.  It is not yet three in the morning and my eyes and nose are going ballistic.  I should have known better. 

    I found this map earlier last month. 

     It maps out 17 different fires that have been burning throughout Washington and Oregon.  Since then I have counted over 25 in Oregon alone.

     The map shows a cycling path - an event that takes place each year and includes cyclists from all over the world - who come from different states and even other nations to participate. We live approximately where the purple dot is.

    I have read that the Horse Creek fire is just twelve miles outside of Riddle.  That is not that far. 

    What ever possessed me to sleep with the windows open?  I must be a glutton for punishment.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Stop Complaining

The beds are dry

Not all the river beds

not all the way

some have puddles

It's hard to believe that

they were near overflowing

just four months ago.

The haze comes and goes

Lately . . . it lingers

hard to breathe

It's hot.  I think the

smoke is holding in the heat

I'm currently washing clothes

It is hot enough to hang them on the line

But won't the smoke defeat my purpose of

having washed them in the first place.

At least I have a choice to

shut my door and keep the elements

outside.  How horrible for those who

have to deal with Hurricane Harvey

and the mess left behind

They can't close the door and leave

it outside - the water and damage

are still in their houses.

Many possessions and loved ones gone.

Should we have to evacuate, it

will be due to smoke inhalation.  I

don't think the fires will come.

Why can't the elements even out so

there are no floods, no fires,

no damaging winds

Monday, August 7, 2017

Solar Activity - Myrtle Creek

            We have activities each week for the Children's Summer Reading Program.  Today's "Build" activity featured a solar oven and building S'mores. Yum!

            JM took the children outside and placed marshmallows in the oven and explained how it would work.  

          We then came inside and had story time - only it was more of a question, answer and demonstration than straight reading.  We talked about the sun and moon.

            When we finished with the book, Rindy was up with her "Pin-a-Moon-to-the-Sun" craft.  Each of the children were given black paper to create a moon.  After all the moons were cut out, each stood in line to paste their moon on the sun while wearing their solar glasses.  It was really fun.   

            The best part of our activity was returning outside with graham crackers and chocolate to add to the marshmallows - which really hadn't toasted to the melting stage.  But those squares of chocolate certainly got soft in less than two minutes in the sun.  

            Everybody enjoyed their s'mores - particularly Jenna who got to keep the solar oven and all leftover fixings. 

Friday, August 4, 2017

Where Is the Moisture?

       One thing that I have really enjoyed about Oregon is watching the scenery change throughout the day.  For example, clouds will surround the hilltops in the morning and slowly lift before noon.  It’s a clean fog that moistens the air and gives it a freshness – at least six to eight months out of the year.  I haven’t seen it in the summer.

       The air has been quite hazy lately.  My eyes burn or are itchy.  Roland and I have been sneezing.  The air reminds me of the poor air quality in Salt Lake at the beginning stages – except that it is HOT outside and no winter chill.  Smoke.  Lots of smoke.  And the fires are further from us this year than the year we had moved in. 

       The air conditioner had not been working at the library, and so it was announced that the library would close as it was seriously warmer in the building than out.  Someone from city hall saw the note on our door and asked to come look at the A/C.  He got it working and asked to keep open to serve as a cooling station.  Thus we extended our hours.

       We were open from 1 – 9 on Wednesday and 10 – 9 yesterday – those are normal library hours in Salt Lake.  Regular hours were created for the library in Myrtle Creek – but nothing like it is in Salt Lake – though it seems there are more hours now on the volunteer-run.  Jenna and I both put in almost three hours for each day of the heat wave. In addition to books, we offered our patrons a cool place to hang and cold water to drink.

        I am the one who always turns on the a/c or the fan – except for this week.  Don’t ask me why.  It’s been hot, but for some reason I was content with just the fan running in my room.  I was on the computer and Roland asked why I didn’t have the air on, proceeds to turn it on full blast and leaves the room.  What’s up with that?  From where I am sitting, my ears were getting cold.  I put on a hat band. 

       Roland’s office lacks A/C.  Not only is it too hot to open a window, but the air is hard to breathe.  If he had had the fan going sending air from my room to his, I’d understand.  But he closed the door.  I turned the A/C down.

       While we slept, I controlled the air.  He was bundled beneath the covers.  I had the air off this morning.  He turned it back on.

       The pool has been high and choppy in the pool.  Monday the turbulence was higher than I had ever seen in a public swimming pool.  Water has been pushing me all over this week – except today.  I couldn’t seem to move in the water more than five feet.  It was weird.

       The pool has water.  The air does not.  Not much in the river beds right now, either.  Bone dry in some places. 

       I was involved in a discussion about this weather.  Three or four of us were complaining until one friend joined the conversation with these words: “I think about our soldiers in the middle east and the heat doesn’t seem so bad.  Grateful for the service.”

       I thanked her for the reminder and the conversation ended.

       I’ve thought about the firefighters, too.  Each time the wind blows and I think that I am grateful for a cool breeze, I often wonder how harmful it is to somebody else.

       I’d like to thank all the soldiers and firefighters who continues to battle and fight a noble cause.