While I'm not Australian born my heart breaks for the carnage in Victoria, Australia.
Australia is now my home, and Victoria is my home state and it has been for many years. We (as a nation) are all shocked and saddened by what's happening there. I am safe now on the West Coast, we moved here from *the fire area* just 12 weeks ago, so much of what has burnt is known to us, places our friends live, places we have had holiday's, built precious memories and spent family time.. The little country town Warragul where Sarah first lived after immigrating from New Zealand, only just survived due to a late wind change yesterday, her best friend has told her. Last night my fav place in Victoria where Derek and I spent many pleasant days, has lost building and one life but was for the most part spared.. I am so grateful that Healsville Wildlife Sanctuary was spared, this wildlife sanctuary stole my heart when I was there and we have the most fond memories of hugging the animals and learning how they exist in the wild.
Thank the Goddess my daughter is safe 50 to 60km away in Melbourne, I received an email from her yesterday saying, she was just leaving to go to the red cross to give blood, her boss who is a Red Cross member has just left work to go into the fire zone.
One of the main fire zones is not to far from where we lived, it is horrific. Last year there were huge bush fires, the smoke blanketed us for weeks, we couldn't open windows or doors, hang out laundry and those with respiratory ailments had no relief depending on the wind direction, but this is different, much closer to home. This country is dry and vast, often drought stricken Victoria has been suffering drought for near 12 years now and it along with New South Wales is very, very prone to this *bush fire season* sadly more than half are lit deliberately and presently the Government is trying to change legislation, to charge the arsonists with murder! For as I type the death toll has tonight to close to 200 hundred people.
While the loss is huge there is a tiny wee spark of renewal in it all, since this country is a harsh land much of the bush and forest has learnt to adapt and overcome such fires., most of the native trees here need hot fires to rejuvenate. The seed pods do not germinate except under ferocious heat to crack the seed pods... so for so many plants, no fire no life. It can be hard to understand at times.
Do please keep Victoria *The Garden State* in your thoughts, also the families who still can not find their loved ones, the policem, firefighters, Red Cross and volunteers who are working around the clock to get this all under control.. The fire is burning maybe 70km from where we ussed to live, we still have friends there. Yes it is heartbreaking, yet this is a strong nation and I am sure the *can do* attitude will overcome..but it is still a country who could use your support and prayers.
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