First fires, then mudslides

You’d think that with all the technology out there these days, that we’d somehow have more control of the natural elements, but sadly, we humans are just as vulnerable as ever when it comes to Mother Nature.

I remember last year when Houston was flooding and Los Angeles was on fire, it seemed like some cosmic joke that one area needed rain so badly and the other had way too much. There’s a similar scenario happening in California now. Fires raged for two weeks, destroying thousands of homes, displacing thousands of people and killing nearly 90 people (and possibly more). Now that the fires are finally contained, the rain shows up. Not a refreshing rain that clears up the air, but A LOT of rain, causing people in certain areas (including Malibu, where Rick Springfield lives) to have to evacuate due to mudslides because so much vegetation was destroyed during the fires earlier in the month.

It’s such a mess. These flooding evacuations are in both places affected by the fires, in Northern California and Southern California. I can’t even imagine what all these people are going through. There was an article about the people who lost their homes in the Camp Fire who were living in a Walmart parking lot because they liked those conditions better than the shelters. And now they have to leave the parking lot because of the rain. How does one even recover from all of this?

Fortunately there are a lot of generous people out there and these tragedies have led to to good people helping others. (Unfortunately there are also scams out there, because there are not so good people taking advantage of tragedy.)

Check out this One Love Malibu Festival concert to raise funds, organized by the Malibu Foundation:

It’s great to see all these artists, including my favorite rock star before he goes out on tour for a few Stripped Down shows a few days later, come together to raise funds for those affected by the fires. According to an article about the show, “100 percent of the proceeds from the event will go to The Malibu Foundation and One Love Malibu relief efforts. The funds will go to those who are uninsured or living paycheck to paycheck with limited resources, to help with animal refuge and care, to rebuild and regenerate Malibu and support proper Wildfire Prevention and Land Stewardship initiatives.”

(Interesting note: According to the article, the venue where the festival will be held was called One Gun Ranch and the name was changed to One Love Ranch for the event.)

What a great lineup! (I wonder if Katy Perry knows that RS sometimes sings “Roar” at his concerts – would be fun to hear a duet of that!)

The tickets for the music festival are already sold out (even the $35,000 packages), which hopefully means that lots of people will receive the support they need. Hopefully those affected will get to attend the concert for free, too, and feel the healing power of music, if only to bring some light into their life for a few hours to help them deal with their new reality.

If you’re able to help, click here for the donation page for the Malibu Foundation.

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A devastating time for California

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The news coming out of California has been so devastating these past few days. First the Nov. 7 shootings at the Borderline Bar & Grill in Thousand Oaks, where a gunman killed 12 people, mainly college-age students.

Then the VERY NEXT DAY (Thursday), the Northern California town of Paradise was almost completely consumed in a wildfire that is now considered the state’s most destructive fire on record. At least 29 people have died so far, 110 people are still missing and 6,700 buildings, mainly homes, were destroyed, according to CNN. It has burned 111,000 acres across Northern California.

Then the NEXT DAY (Friday), only a few miles away from the site of the Nov. 7 shooting , two more wildfires started – the Hill Fire and the Woolsey Fire. As of tonight, Sunday, they are both still burning and more than 250,000 people have been ordered to evacuate from their homes. The Woolsey fire has spread to 83,275 acres and the Hill Fire covered 4,531 acres, according to CNN. Together, they are responsible for the destruction of 179 structures, but another 57,000 are threatened, according to fire officials.

I have several relatives in Los Angeles and nearby areas so I have been paying very close attention to these Southern California fires. Fortunately, thank G-d, at this time none of their homes are in danger.

However, I’m still watching the fire’s devastation closely because I know the areas fairly well having lived in L.A. for several years and am shocked about how much damage these fires are inflicting to people’s lives, animals’ lives and the landscape.

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A surreal scene on Zuma Beach

Although I don’t know anyone personally who has been evacuated, I’m very concerned for those affected and cannot even imagine what they are going through as they wait to learn the fate of their house.

As you may know, Rick Springfield lives in Malibu and his house is in the fire zone.

When the fire started, RS was on tour in Florida and then El Paso, and according to FB reports by others, his wife and dog safely evacuated. That’s good news that everyone is safe. And now his fans all are waiting – and praying – that they will all get to go home. Because RS has been so open with his fans in the past, we know about his collections, his parents’ piano that he shipped from Australia and his home studio, the Black Lagoon, where he has created so much incredible music. To many fans, he almost seems like family, even to those of us he doesn’t actually know. And we hope that these fires stay the #$@* away from his house.

We are waiting and praying that the fires will soon be extinguished and that everyone will be able to safely return home and that there won’t be any more casualties or destruction. Thank goodness for all those dedicated and brave firefighters, police officers and other first responders who have been working so hard to protect people and save their animals and their homes. Wishing them much strength and success in their work.

UPDATE ON THE AFTERNOON OF NOV. 12:

Their house is OK (besides a burnt fence)! Relief!! (So sorry to hear about the neighbors though, and all others who weren’t as lucky.) As of today, the Woolsey fire has burnt 91,952 acres and is only 20 percent contained, according to CBS. Plus there’s lots of wind – more prayers are needed!

UPDATE ON THE AFTERNOON OF NOV. 13:

See his Instagram post to see what happened to his neighbor’s house, two doors down. So devastating. Sadly there are hundreds of similar scenes in both Southern and Northern California this week. So many lives affected.