Blue Mountains rains have finally arrived

Water filled HeartOur home’s lucky John Clew heart bricks, today full of drenching rain water
[Photo by Editor, 20131110, photo © under  ^Creative Commons]


It’s very wet.  It’s actually soaking wet up here in the Blue Mountains.  How welcoming are the rains?  They took long enough. Poor bloody bush has been long parched out there; too parched, too tinder dry.  Now the rains are over us and they are staying for while, and they can stay as long as they like.

Some dates stick in one’s mind.  Friday 12th October 2012 is a date that I have personally etched into my memory.  It was the day that constant snow suddenly blanketed the Upper Blue Mountains out of nowhere.   The snow on the ground was a foot thick and we lost tree branches to the weight of it.  It was a memorable Friday, as it no longer snows up here.

Apparently, it used to snow most winters in the Upper Blue Mountains.  Living memory recalls that a few opportunistic locals even once skiied down Katoomba Street during Winter Magic.

Residents of the townships of Winmalee and Mount Victoria in the Blue Mountains will now remember Thursday 17th October 2013, but not for happy times.    It was an awful day. For those affected and involved likely the worst ever.  Out of nowhere separate wildfires suddenly ravaged through their communities and took away many homes and memories.

I have happened to drive past Linksview Road involuntary over recent days.  Passing by incinerated homes just off the side of the road feels voyeuristic and so immoral. Luck is perhaps a curse, like pretending routine life-as-usual between others’ total loss. No way.

None of it’s fair to anyone affected or not affected but no less it about Mountains folk not knowing what to say or do for the blackened ruins down the street.  Nothing wrong with outpouring and I think it is a right.

Only the firies know it could have been worse.

Thank you Firies

And I shouldn’t have driven down St Georges Parade yesterday on the way home, but I wanted to just to know the trauma hidden off limits by the authorities.  Now its incinerated street and homes haunt me.  I walked this street just after the 2006 Grose Fires, observing the hazard reduction above Lawsons Long Alley. Many new homes on a no through road ridge nestled above Blue Mountains bush.  Bloody lucky then.

I awoke very early this morning realising how lucky I am as one of the 99.9% of Blue Mountains residents with a home, just as per usual.  For us it is life as usual and we have rain on our roof.  It is because we have a roof and a house.

Over three hundred residents this time on the morning of the 17th October did too like me, but since then they no longer do.  I can’t imagine the ravage and the total loss.  But I write this because catastrophe needs to be said because it is just that.  All Blue Mountains people need to be affected by the incinerated homes down sealed off crime scene streets that could have been theirs.

If I had lost my home, I expect that I would not be in a state to write coherently, but I am so I choose to because I take an active interest.  I witnessed wildfire threaten my home in 2001, seeing my garden hose drizzle to a horrifying dribble rendering me castratingly helpless and useless.  I have taken an empathetic very personal interest in bushfire threats ever since.

My father lost his entire family records in a garage fire when I was 18.  He was probably devastated at the time, but I don’t recall him expressing or showing grief because he was probably brave facing to us kids and probably because of my immature age.  Over time he realised that the now and family are most important to one’s life.  He has re-affirmed this over the subsequent years, with time and with a strength of family to move on.  Sounds easy and simple in hindsight, but hindsight is what the memories are about, and as part of our survival instinct we tend to recall in most detail the good times, and confine the bad times to snippets.

Now that today, three week’s hence the rains are over us, I can happily stand under them and get happily soaked quite eccentrically for all it matters.  So what matters at the end of the day when the sympathy has packed up and move on?

It is about why we made the choice and it was a soul thing.  We live for hope and so we should.  We live in the Blue Mountains because we choose because the Mountains are a special place for reasons us here know.

Bless you.

. Winter Magic 2008
A memorable sunny day at a Blue Mountains Winter Magic
[Photo by Editor, 20080621, photo © under  ^Creative Commons]


It is 2013 and we are to become wise, in our own time.


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