rejectomorph (flying_blind) wrote,

Wearing On

The news continues from the fire zones to be depressing. More than ten thousand structures have been destroyed by our fire, and five hundred in the Southern California fire, though those in the south were probably far more expensive on average. Over 50,000 evacuated up here, and an astonishing 250,000 in the south. But with only two known deaths the south is far luckier than we have been. The death toll here is up to 56, with a majority of those in the town of Paradise. The list of those reported missing is still over 100, and there could be many missing who have not been reported, especially in some of the tiny settlements in the region which have long been a refuge for the impoverished but self reliant. The official list of the missing consists almost entirely of people in their seventies or older.

The severe shortage of facilities for housing the displaced in the region has led to the development of makeshift camps, the largest being in the parking lot of the Chico Walmart. Today an outbreak of norovirus was reported at this camp. Shock and stress weaken the immune system, and the filthy air isn't helping, so this is hardly surprising, and I hope the local public health system is prepared to get it under control before we get a wider epidemic.

I wasn't able to get to the post office today, nor make any progress on finding out if any of my cats are among those who have been brought down by the animal rescue crews who are working on the ridge. As my house was on the east side of town, it seems most likely that any of my cats that did get found would be taken down the road to Oroville, where the emergency shelter set up at the old hospital is already full. This worries me because most of my cats being part of a feral colony have had their ears tipped to identify them as such, and I fear that known ferals might be euthanized to make way for cats thought more likely to be claimed. One of my friendliest cats has a tipped ear, though he has long outgrown his feral ways.

My brother-in-law was able to get into town, courtesy of a friend who works for PG&E, and he retrieved his stranded truck from the parking lot at Walgreen's. They also drove farther up to see if my sister's car had survived to fire where it was parked in a convalescent home's parking lot when we were forced to abandon it and walk to the evacuation center. Though as we had heard the convalescent home was destroyed, the car and one other parked nearby did survive. This good news was tempered by the fact that my brother in law was also able to confirm that their house is gone. He was unable to get over to my side of town to discover if my house is gone, but the odds of its survival are so close to nil that I've given up hope that it did.

As every day since arriving in Chico I am exhausted. I haven't gone to bed so early so many nights in a row in ages.

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