T made it to Jacksonville (JAX) Friday night. I was anxious (that being my motherly perogative, of course) about him traveling alone on a six hour trip and when I had not heard from him after 10 hours, and getting no response to my (patient) text...I called him. The phone rang and rang and rang and then...his voice...or rather his voicemail. Arrrgh! Of course at this point I have a bad scenario playing in my head. More worry.

He calls me back (another) 2 hours later and tells me that he got there safe and sound, settled in and had been out with friends (from home and bootcamp) and they just got out of a movie. So much for "please check in with me along the way". (hint, hint, son)

He was so happy to be in JAX, told me he loved being back in a big city with freeways!

I'm happy that he is happy.



In October, while most of the country enjoys the cooler temperatures of Fall and the leaves begin changing colors, San Diego experiences 'Fire Season'. The air is dry--zapped of moisture--and the Santa Ana winds arrive without much notice or invitation. And with that combination come the fires.

There is fear in the air as well. No one can predict with certainty where the fires will strike and where the winds will take the flames and who will lose their homes, businesses or lives. So we wait. And we pray.

This morning, I turned on the news and learned there were two fires burning. One was out of control. The other one was 25% contained. I stepped outside in the early morning darkness and there was the faint familiar scent of smoke in the air. It was not how I wanted to begin my day.

In 2003, I watched wind fueled fires travel from a small pocket in East County and traverse northwestward across three freeways toward the coast line. And in a very short span of time. Hours. Thousands of homes were burned, lives lost and our city shut down for two days. We were told to stay indoors and only go outside if necessary. The air was thick with smoke and ash. It was a memory that has scarred us, as much, if not more, than the scars that the fire left on our landscape.

From a single distant plume of smoke tall on the horizon, spotted from our driveway early in the morning on October 26th, throughout the day, we watched the smoke consume all of the blue sky until there was nothing but a haze that burned our eyes and throats. We literally could not breathe without coughing. Even inside our home. And we lived miles from the fire. At one point the fire distantly crested a ridge visible from our home and we wondered aloud if we should begin packing our own things in case we too, were told to evacuate. After all, who would have imagined that it could have come as far as it had? But we were spared.

We watched in horror again on October 22, 2007 --just four days shy of the four year "anniversary date" of the 2004 Firestorm--as fires torched the North and South areas of our county wiping out entire neighborhoods again consuming both stuctures and lives. We naively believed --or hoped--that the Firestorm of 2004 was a freakish disaster, one that would not repeat itself in our lifetime. But, those who lived through and fought the Inaja Fire of 1956 knew better. That fire killed 11 firefighters. Now we know better, too.

And today, October 14, 2008, at 11:40 a.m. I just read that one of the fires is contained, the other has forced the closure of a freeway and now, yet another fire has erupted...in Rancho Bernardo, an area that has only begun to rebuild from last year.

It is still early in October...but, sadly, the fire season has arrived. And we can only watch and pray. Please pray for our firefighters. They are our Heroes.



T got his orders and is headed to Jacksonville, Florida (JAX) to continue his training as a Flight Engineer (FE). He will have nine months of school for flight engineer and a few weeks of other combined schooling/training with it for a total of one year. He is looking forward to leaving P'Cola on the 17th and classing up on the 28th. He will be in school with his buddy from High School and hopes that some more of his friends from P'Cola will also end up in JAX. Stay tuned...



I was so happy when the weatherman said there would be rain for us today! Well, that is not totally correct. He actually said that a "storm" was coming in...but that is San Diego speak for rain...so yeah, we got some rain tonight. And to translate that....the pavement got wet. But it was heavenly for me. I loved the sound of the rain hitting the leaves in the trees and the smell of the rain.

That wonderful rain and drop of temperatures down to the 60s sure beat the 98 degrees we had two days ago. I am so tired of sunshine and warm weather. This is just one of the reasons we want to move to Tennessee...we long for four defined seasons.

I know so many people think San Diego is Paradise and I really am not a complainer, but....yeah, hear that, BUT? San Diego does not have "weather"(Y'all know what I mean).

Instead, we have 3 seasons of different degrees of warm and one season of cooler. So my favorite season here is winter...when it is "cold" (according to the people that LOVE San Diego weather) and I can light a fire in my fireplace, light lots of beautiful candles, snuggle into blankets on the sofa, wear sweats and socks and drink hot tea. There is nothing more comforting than a candle lit room. After nine freaking months of warm....I am ready for COLD.

I love going to Julian in November or December and breathing in the brisk mountain air and wearing a warm lined jacket and boots. Sometimes if we are lucky, our visit will coincide with a recent snowfall. We duck into a warm restaurant for a hot lunch and are off again to make our way in and out of the local shops, some with pot belly stoves giving off blessed heat as a respite from the 40 degree temperatures outside . After perusing all of the nooks and crannies and finding treasures, we later make our way to the Julian Pie Company for a fresh piece of warm apple pie and a cup of piping hot coffee.

Today's cooler temperatures and rain reminded me that my favorite season is almost here!