By four o'clock this morning the smoke was so thick that it woke me up. I finally had to turn on the air conditioner, just to filter out some of the smoke. The house still reeks of it, of course, but it's not as bad as it is outside. If the breezes start to clear it up again this afternoon, they will also cause the fire to start expanding again. What it adds up to is that we're damned if we breathe and damned if we suffocate.
The only thing that can be considered good news is that the estimated containment date has not yet been pushed beyond August 31. That, and the forecast that calls for only about a week of triple-digit temperatures. As long as current conditions hold, the fire probably won't expand much in this direction. If high pressure settles in the Nevada deserts and a low moves onshore, it probably will head this direction. That would be way worse than being shrouded in smoke every day.
Next week I won't be able to follow the fire on the Internets, as my Internets are going away for anywhere from three to five days. This is due to some bizarre quirks of AT&T. I never got around to having my own name put on my telephone bill. I finally did it yesterday, but because my Internet comes from the same company, and because that company is the ever-grotesque AT&T, the company is going to shut down my internet service and restart it a few days later. Why they have to do this I have no idea. I've never heard of anyone losing Comcast internet when they change the name on their cable account, or even when they cancel their cable and keep only Comcast's internet. AT&T is just a terminally flaky outfit, I guess.
If I could remember my Juno password, I could at least stay minimally connected with forty hours of free dial-up, but that password is trapped on Sluggo, Sluggo will not wake up, and Juno, being almost as flaky as AT&T, appears to have no way for me to retrieve the password from them. The backup e-mail address I used for my Juno account is itself long gone. This is the sort of situation that makes me wish the U.S. Postal Service provided internet and e-mail service. I always get my snail mail, even when I don't want it.