Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Fighting Fires!

When we stay at a nice campground, we assume that things are relatively safe.  Usually the camphost is friendly and wants us to feel welcome.  The bathrooms are somewhat clean, and the sites are acceptable. 
But, yet there are dangers at all campgrounds; the mediocre to the best.

Fire.  Definately a danger we did not expect to have to deal with.

A volunteer at a campground decided to leave a huge brush fire unattended. 

The fire began to spread, out of control, towards our camper and the cabins near by. 

My husband and I were on our daily walk, enjoying the pleasant fall temperatures when suddenly our 18 year old son came flying up to us on his ATV.

His frantic voice gave us a clue as to the seriousness of his announcement, "The field is on fire!"

My husband jumped on with Cody and they sped back to the camper.  I walked as quickly as I could.

When I arrived, I told Hanna to take the kids to the lodge on the other side of the campground.  I got on my ATV and drove to the field behind the trees next to our camper.

I made a quick assessment.  There was no way Shae and Cody could put it out by themselves.  I asked Shae if he wanted me to ride to the cabins on the other side of the campground to get some men camping there.  I hoped to get them before the fire reached the forest tree line on the back side of the field and our camper on the other.

He told me to go.

By the time the men arrived back to the field, Shae and Cody had put almost the entire fire out.  A couple of men were able to help finish.

I was astonished.  The fire was huge!  How did they put it out?

Cody told me later, with awe, "You should have seen dad.  He was a crazy man.  The fire got to the cedar trees.  Dad was standing under one hacking at the tree branches with his shovel.  The fire was above him and he just kept going."

Shae told me that when the fire reached the cedar trees on the edge of the forest, he thought it was over, the fire was going to spread to the surrounding national forest.  From there it would spread to the lodge and cabins on that side of the camp, (not where the kids were, though), and our camper.

He told me that the winds would change at just the right time.  They ran around the perimeter of the fire, with only shovels, trying to put it out. 

The camphost showed up with the tractor and took over, making sure it did not flare up again.

I looked at Cody and Shae.  They were black from head to foot, both coughing from all the smoke.  Cody didn't have regular shoes on, only sandals.  He said he didn't have time to get anything else.

Shae told me that if they had been even one minute later, the forest would have burned, it was that close.

All of this happened so fast, that I didn't need to call the fire department.  This camp is so rural, that it would have taken too long for them to get there anyways.

With the Lord's help and His strength, the fire was put out, and just in time.














Thursday, October 14, 2010

Staying on track...Remembering why we travel.

When we first decided to sell our home and travel full time, we made numerous lists.
  • Pros
  • Cons
  • Budget
  • Where we want to go
  • Goals
Some things we wrote were right on the money, while others were completely wrong.  Other lists, like our goals list has stayed almost totally the same.  But, so often I find us wandering from that list. 

We get distracted with so many different things such as too much sight seeing, continual chores that never seem to end, computer, tv, work, etc.  It is not that these things are bad in themselves, it is that anything can be done at the wrong time, too often, or not enough. 

The other day I looked at our list of goals we made when we first decided to do this trip.  I wouldn't change much.  In fact, I need to remind myself more often the reasons why we did this trip.  Writing a list and putting it in the bathroom will be the best reminder for everyone.  Any time I want the family to learn something, Spanish, Latin, bible verses, I put them on the bathroom wall.  It is a captive audience!