Driving into town on Reche Road you pass some of the worst fire damage – in fact the Valley Oaks Mobile Home Park where over one-hundred homes were lost is visible from the road as you drive by. And there’s other damage – the canyon by Wilt Road was particularly hard hit. It’s a miracle if you look closely, because you can see where the firefighters held back the flames.
At the intersection of Reche and Wilt something interesting is happening. Someone is placing Christmas decorations on the burned branches. It started with just a couple shiny balls. Then it grew, and now it’s starting to spread down the hill. Who knows if it’s one person, or an organized group, or just a bunch of individuals inspired by what they see, and contributing in their own way.
It could have been garish. or ugly, or just in bad taste – but somehow it’s not. It’s beautiful, and it fills me with a combination of hope and defiance every time I drive past. Hope for the future, because the fire did not destroy the truly important things in life – and defiance, because even though the landscape is charred, we’re clearly not letting the fire destroy our hope.
It’s just a few shiny decorations – but it’s very cool! Kudos to whoever is responsible!