July 2, 2021
The acrid smell of smoke filled my nostrils as I rose from my slumber. My eyes burned with the microscopic particles of ash that have invaded the atmosphere of my Okanagan home. I noticed the weight of the air in my lungs and dreaded what could be the beginning of a long summer of smokey skies.
The heat and dry conditions have been ripe for the start of a terrible fire season in the Northwestern part of North America. A heatwave the likes of which I have never seen has hovered like a giant hammer over much of the continent.
This week the hammer fell.
Towns have burned and evacuation notices have gone out. Currently, there are 117 wildfires raging in the province, with almost half of them started in the last two days. Many of these fires have been caused by human activity. The rest by lightning activated by extreme heat and dry conditions. In the days and weeks to come, I hope we can avoid the thick smoke billowing into our valley and filling our homes with the caustic aroma.
I feel helpless in the face of the situation. Should I do as some suggest? Should I get rid of my boats and my truck and go back to riding a bicycle or maybe just get an electric car? Is the electric car the answer…
There is no easy solution to the myriad of problems we face in the world today. All we can do is live our best lives.
And hope for rain…