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The fire finally arrived in my area on Friday morning just over 24
hours ago. Thank God the wind was almost non-existent and the
temperatures cool. I watched it slowly approached all day Thursday -
at one stage we were told it moved 200 metres in 1 and a half hours.
I forced myself to lie down at 1am on Friday - got up and checked at
3.15am then again at 4.15 am when I saw flames approaching less than
100 metres from the west - not the south of the main front. I later
discovered it was the backburn. As I rushed to my hoses, a fire
engine arrived - one for each house as promised and my crew even
saved my garden although they had been told to just protect houses.
It was a horrible long day as flames later came up the other side of
the street and columns of black smoke would suddenly arise on
different ridge tops. My house continually shook from helicopters
passing overhead - next time a student asks for a picture of an
angel, I will find them a helicopter :-).
The bush is all black around me now and smoke hangs everywhere but
for the first time in 10 days I have had a full night's sleep. Today
the fighting is further to the west in the next villages and bad
weather is again expected on Sunday and Monday so while my personal
worries are over I must continue to think of others and pray for rain
which is the only thing which will end the crisis. It is now 18 days
without rain and 22 days is the all time record.
Thanks again and apologies for messages off topic.
Brian Ralph                             Teacher-Librarian
mailto:bralph@zeta.org.au              St Agnes Campus, Christ Catholic College
http://www.zeta.org.au/~staglib        PO Box 24, Rooty Hill, NSW,
phone:61-2-9675 2422                    Australia
fax:61-2-9832 1927

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