I remember how Micheal and I huddled together on his cramped patio in La Mesa, dazed by the red skies signifying the Cedar Fire. Smoking Misty 120s to spite charred air thicker than cotton from the wafted smoke and heat. We drew meaningless squiggles on the ash carpet with our big toes, blinking against the burn. This was the first year I smoked, the first year out of high school, the first year I drove....the first year without Momma. I can't speak for him but I distanced my mind from the approaching firewaves - and I kept thinking how beautiful the sky was, bloody like heavily layered watercolours, the sun, when visible, a flared pumpkin distorted by heat mirage.
The city is on fire again and I worry more this time around. We were evacuated at work but no one dared whisper the word "evacuation." We were simply "closing for the day." Possibly longer, indicated by the message recorded in our director's voice, informing callers to call us back for assistance "within the next few days."
It has been reported somewhere the fires are thought to reach the actual city of San Diego tomorrow. I see Kaleena read that somewhere too. Fire is my hugest fear too.
My lower abdomen is cramping for no discernible reason. I am strangely anxious and calm.