Monday, June 27, 2011

But that I burn much more in boiling sweat

See that white tent, just past the SUV that photobombed me? That's a fireworks tent set up in a parking lot.. It's got balloons, one sad little "Fireworks!" banner (that's the orange thing off to the right), no air conditioning, and a cheap plastic roof (whatever they're making cheap tents out of these days).

The person behind the plain wood counter in the tent is smoking. I didn't go in to look. They just always are.

We live in a desert. The temperature is going to be in the high nineties all week.

See that sign in the building beyond it? Looks like a number one? That's the logo for Page One Books, the largest locally-owned bookstore in Albuquerque. Which happens to be 30 yards away from the fireworks tent.

Because people are stupid.

I'm not a big fan of fireworks, as it turns out.

The Wallow Fire, the largest wildfire in Arizona history, spread into New Mexico around the Luna, NM area. As of today, it's 80% contained.

Update/expansion: It was started on May 29th. So far (and 24 hours later than the initial post here, it's at almost 90% containment), it's destroyed roughly 540 thousand acres. Six towns (Eager, Springerville, Nutrioso, Alpine, Luna and Blue River) were evacuated, and it's taken almost 2,000 people to fight it.

Los Alamos was evacuated because of wildfires today. The fires have, in fact, crossed over into the boundaries of the Los Alamos nuclear lab, if you're curious; that's called the Las Conchas fire, and as of today, it's eaten about 45,000 acres of the Santa Fe National Forest, and as I write this, it is zero percent contained.

The 346 Fire in Belen, NM (named after the Highway 346 Bridge, currently its northern boundary) is a mere 150-acre fire; it's destroyed 3 houses and several outbuildings, and is threatening about 150-200 more. Earlier today, they suspected that they'll have it contained by Wednesday. Of course, they weren't taking into account the 25 mph winds (with 40 mph gusts) that are kicking up.

The Horseshoe 2 fire in southeast Arizona never made it to the New Mexico border. It destroyed 223 thousand acres, but is now considered contained, as of Saturday. Crews will be downgrading to a Type 3 team Wednesday, if nothing goes wrong.

The Pacheco fire, north of Santa Fe, has only destroyed about ten thousand acres. It's been going a week and a half, and it's currently about 10% contained.

State law in New Mexico prevents them from implementing a ban on fireworks, even during one of the worst fire seasons ever.

Oh, and in case you missed it, next Monday is the Fourth of July.

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