(Note: Our house burned down in the “Marshall fire” last week (12/30/2021), along with the rest of the neighborhood. Until things get settled, new articles might be delayed. Meanwhile, here’s what’s been happening with Regina and me during the past week….)
This is our neighborhood last year (below). Our house is tucked away in the trees at the start and end of the video clip (courtesy of googlemaps):
Here (below) is our homesite after the fire (courtesy of our neighbor, who managed to get on-site the following morning, despite the lockdown, and snap a few pictures):
And here’s how it all happened….
In the past couple of months we’ve had two unprecedented, hurricane-force winds sweep down from the Rockies, through Boulder, and across dry fields and grasslands… kicking up thick dust clouds that sandblasted our home 10 miles to the east. Being on a hilltop, our house was buffeted relentlessly in the 100-mph gusts.
The second windstorm, last week, brought an added surprise. A small fire got out of control in the countryside south of Boulder, turning it into a raging inferno that swept across the dry fields and grasslands and destroyed rural homes as it moved toward our town (Louisville) and our neighboring town (Superior).
The thick squall of dust, smoke and ash indicated that something apocalyptic was heading our way. As our house filled up with smoke, my first thought was to sit it out in the basement, where the smoke hadn’t reached (I didn’t know the magnitude of the fire at the time). Regina insisted we grab our personal papers and files (which we’d gathered together and put into a plastic tub in the basement just a few months earlier), throw them in the car along with an overnight bag, and head out.
It didn’t take much to convince me. By then, emergency vehicles with sirens were moving through the neighborhood with loudspeakers demanding we all leave immediately. I ran out, flagged down a police car, and was told to join the queue of cars heading out of town. A big fire was imminent.
When we moved into that house many years ago, it seemed like paradise. Regina had her desk upstairs facing the Rockies to the west and overlooking Harper Lake across the street to the north. We took frequent walks around the lake and through the rich, grassy open space to the west.
It was always in the back of my mind that our hilltop refuge would be safe from flooding, but we’d be vulnerable to heavy winds that could do real damage to the neighborhood. (I’ve always ruminated on best-case and worst-case scenarios to keep things in perspective.) But the fire was a complete surprise!
Anyway, we drove straight east through clogged streets for a few miles (it took an hour and a half) and checked into a Hampton Inn, certain that we’d return home in the morning. But as we watched the news on TV that night, it became more and more apparent that our house might not be there in the morning.
Well, long story short, our entire neighborhood burned down.
Regina and I are thankful for our spiritual understanding that’s been growing in recent decades—the idea that the only reality is in the source at the center of everything (including you and us and everyone and everything else) where nothing is ever disturbed, while the Earth and all of its structures, rough dynamics, and dramas are just fleeting and illusory. That’s something we consider to be a basic truth, but it certainly hit home for us that day. Our “illusion” disappeared, literally, overnight.
For the first day or two I looked at our situation philosophically, even with humor—
- In recent years I’d been fretting more and more about the task of downsizing and decluttering. (When joking cousin Jim heard about the fire, he said with a chuckle, “There are easier ways to downsize, you know.” I laughed and replied, “I know, but it seems like the more we meditate, the more we seem to shape reality with our thoughts,” and we laughed some more.)
- Friend Clyde asked what he and his partner Janice could do to help in this difficult time, and I said, “You probably shouldn’t invite us over; we might never leave.” We laughed.
As days passed, reality slowly set in. Or, more accurately, we had to move reality to the back burner in order to deal with the illusion.
- Where we’re going to live. (with friends for a week or two, then a rented, furnished apartment)
- Insurance—great gift, small curse. (We’re fully insured, fortunately, but insurers need to know structural details and a complete list of everything that’s not part of the house, its value, and when we got it… “If you can imagine turning the house upside down and shaking it, everything that drops or rattles needs to be inventoried”)
- How long to rebuild the neighborhood. (considering the scope of the damage—a thousand homes destroyed—a couple of years, at least)
- Temporary address changes to be shared with dozens of friends and businesses as we move around…
- Closing accounts for newspaper, waste disposal, lawn guys, tree guys, landline phone service (it took a full day of phone calls and emails to finally close our Centurylink account for our landline; lots of companies seem desperate to hold onto customers during the technology revolution)…
- Getting food, clothes, Internet… toothpaste, soap, razors, and other toiletries… kitchen stuff, bedroom stuff…
- Replacing jewelry, tools, extension cords, printer, TV….
And the irreplaceable stuff—family photos, memorabilia, my 40 years of afterlife research that includes hundreds of spirit face photos and cassette tapes of spirit voices coming through phone and radio… all lost. (Fortunately most of my research stuff is in on my websites, so copies can be salvaged, while family history now consists mostly of memories.)
As I write this, it all seems overwhelming, but as long as we keep anchored in the reality of the situation—that the inner light can never be disturbed—Regina and I know that we’ll get through all of this external drama.
Why? Because, like everyone else, that’s our lifetime mission: Get through Earth’s drama, learn from it, and help others through it.
Anyway, rest assured that Regina and I are fine. Our worldly stuff is gone, but in the bigger picture, all of that stuff is inconsequential. Even our lives here on Earth are fleeting. It’s our place in the grand, eternal scheme of the omniverse that’s all-important, not our place at 1021 Willow.
I took some extra time to write this article because I’ll probably be using some of the information in the next article on my macyafterife website… about “Apocalpyse: Revelation”. Writing about our mini apocalypse gave me the chance (and incentive) to start writing the bigger piece. 😉