Monday, October 22, 2007

The Malibu Canyon Fire

Our daughter went to school at Pepperdine in Malibu. We spent three and one half years making trips out there to visit her. Right before she left California, I spent a month with her. We know Malibu well. We visited the Malibu Presbyterian church - it has some good programs for Pepperdine students. I have memories of a breakfast served before church and very friendly people.

I've been mesmerized today as I try to picture the areas that are burning. It sounds as though one of the houses that burned last January was being reconstructed, and that has burned. The Malibu Colony shopping center with the grocery store Ralph's also has a yogurt shop - Malibu Yogurt as well as a favorite restaurant, Coogies. Sounds like the damage there is superficial, but the photos of the church are sad - it is literally burned to the ground.

The church is more than a building - it will be rebuilt. But they will have to find a place to meet in the meantime.

There is also a Catholic church nearby - I think it is OK but was definitely in harm's way earlier.

But tonight, the fire is still burning, uncontained. There are still students at Pepperdine. It looks like the fire is burning up Malibu Canyon Road - a very scenic, but narrow canyon.

The house where Debra lived at the end of her Pepperdine time is right on the PCH. Hopefully it is far enough down that it is not in danger.

Another of my favorite places is the historic Adamson house. Some of my best rose photos were taken there. Last report is that it is OK. It is a very unique and historic structure - I hope the fires do not go that direction.

I've seen some callous posts at the LA TImes - people who don't have a lot of sympathy for those "rich" folk. Malibu does have a wide variety of incomes. But rich or poor - certain kinds of things are hard to replace - your children's photos, your children's art, family letters. Yes, it is easier for the rich to rebuild. But they have feelings, grief, and pain just like anyone else.

I think everyone in Malibu deserves prayers right now. I hope and pray that the wind will die down, so the firemen can get some firebreaks established and get this terrible fire put out. And I hope that no one else dies anywhere in California from the many fires burning tonight.

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