We’ll we’ve had quite a unplanned adventure the last few weeks when we really would have rather been in the garden!
Dane had been working long hours at the orchards while I was holding fort with the kids at home. We were both so exhausted and barely able to say two words to each other before falling asleep of the evening.
I remember putting Banjo our 4 year old to bed one night when there was a huge bang of thunder.
Thunder storms are unusual in our part of the world and this one was powerful. We saw lightening strike at the end of our street then all was quiet.
The next morning we noticed smoke and checked the fire site online to discover the lightening had started several fires across the state and a fire at the end of our street.
Luckily they got the fire on our street under control fairly quickly, The kids loved seeing the helicopter fly low over the paddocks and put their siren on for them.
Quickly we went back to our normal routine of work, kids and chaos not knowing what the next weeks would bring.
We were excited when Dane finally had three days off and had lots of plans to do garden and bee jobs.
One of the Fires in the Tahune wilderness had grown larger so we vaguely kept a eye on the TFS alert page and listened to the radio for any changes.
We spent the morning collecting chamomile to harvest and I noticed I had lots of messages. When I checked I saw we had been upgraded to emergency level and advised to leave the area.
Our next few hours were spent wrangling chickens, packing essentials and listening to the fire news which was sounding ominous and saying the fire was quickly growing.
Eventually that afternoon we got to the evacuation centre where we slept 2 nights inside and 3 out in a tent we borrowed from friends.
It was very stressful being away from home but it showed us how special our community is. We made new friends in the evacuation centre and had lots of offers of help from friends which we really appreciated.
We are now back home and while the fire keeps burning , we remain on advice warning and the sound of the helicopters send us ridged. The smoke has cleared and we feel safe to get back to business.
We feel very lucky we could come home. We are devastated for the wild life but the firefighters did a amazing job preventing any human lives being lost and few homes destroyed. We feel for those who lost their homes many being uninsured artists who’d built their place with love not money.
The process has taught us a lot the importance of being prepared. The importance of community and also what in our lives is important.