Image from Clare Snow
I've been reeling from all the daily reports and updates from those affected by the Victorian bushfires, and marvelling at all the strange observations to be made at a time like this.
Obviously many people have been donating time, money and goods to assist with the recovery, and often local radio has put out a call for items that I just wouldn't have thought of.
Disposable razors, bras, can openers, bird seed, men's suits (for attending the many funerals to come), temporary fencing.....
We have ransacked our house a few times for things to donate, I grabbed strange things that weren't obvious either; emery boards, tiny kids undies, handbags and purses, bobby pins, even a sealed mascara that came free with a magazine. I'm hoping that goes to someone who really misses her mascara.
The loss of life is heartbreaking and especially so now that I have a kid, I'm easily reduced to tears. I've been thinking slowly over the last few days about the loss of one's home, what that would mean, how would it feel, bone-numbingly shocking or strangely liberating?
I look around my house and wonder what I'd really miss, other than a place to rest, and to be honest there are not that many 'things' that are truly irreplaceable. Family, animals, living breathing beings are the most treasured, the most irreplaceable.
I remember being inside on Saturday with the airconditioner on, watching my gum trees bend sideways in the freakish wind, and thinking that if a spark was to land in my suburban yard the whole place would have gone up. There's some comfort to be had from living in the city during bushfire season, but when I look at the dry parched landscape I'm living with there's not that much difference.
We live in an area where we see a lot of emergency services helicopters going to and from Essendon Airport, and for a week have been greeting Elvis the water-bombing helicopter every morning and evening (my son loves helicopters). Usually Elvis is bright safety orange, on Saturday evening he headed back to Essendon a grim shade of black.
I may never see a bushfire, but I suddenly feel that I need to have more woollen blankets, woollen pants, heck, an all-in-one woollen suit.
Visit Our Community for a multitude of ways to help.