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If you were watching the national news last week, you saw reports on California’s #OakFire. When Ginger Z (Good Morning America) shows up in your backyard, you know it’s big.

Big and bad. But we already knew that because this is how it started: around 2 PM, Friday, July 22. I walked outside and saw this…and started to cry. I knew it was close, and I knew it was bad.

Since Paul had to make a delivery to Mariposa—fifteen miles away, I joined him. In just 30 minutes, the fire had quadrupled. This was our view from Highway 140 (one of the main roads into and out of Yosemite National Park).

This was what we saw when we stopped at the grocery store on our way out of town thirty minutes later.

When we got home, we pulled into the driveway of our Charter School and our hearts sank. It looked like an atomic bomb went off. A day later, the school became an emergency shelter for people displaced by the fire.

This was the view that first night from the valley thirty miles away. (Photo credit: Colleen Slagter)

Over the next week, true heroes fought from the air and on the ground 24-7 to try to tame this wicked beast. Our son, Jon-Paul, and the Mariposa SAR team answered the call to help evacuate people from the fire’s path. That first night he put in a 12-hour shift.

There’s really no way to convey the magnitude of this loss and the scope of the valiant effort that’s gone into saving lives, homes, and animals. As it stands today (August 1), the #Oakfire has consumed 19,244 acres and is 72% contained. But, I’m very sorry to say 124 homes were lost, with numerous outbuildings and other structures, too. This is a small town. Everyone knows someone who lost everything. It’s truly so hard to comprehend, even when you watch it happening.

Now, the #mariposastrong get stronger. The work of rebuilding begins. And, sadly, we hold our breath and pray for the people in a county north of us near the Oregon border where the #McKinneyFire is raging: 55,493 acres, 0% contained, and two confirmed dead. My poor state.

I don’t know about you but I #amreading to escape the heat and bad news. To that end, here are some great buys and new releases that might interest you.

Hugs and happy reading, my friends. Stay hydrated, stay safe, and keep reading.


(Click on the image and it will take you to the page to learn more or buy.)

Upcoming Newsletters:
Tues, Aug 9: UNSUITABLY PERFECT trailer & snippets
Thurs, Aug 18: Happy B-day, Old Man…er, Paul & a new Box Set surprise
Thurs, Sep 1: On the road again…RV travels commence



Copyright © 2021 Debra Salonen