Tuesday, July 23, 2019 -
Print Edition

Colorado is burning

If I do say so myself, I am a proud  Colorado show off. One of the things I gloat about is our beautiful four seasons — how the winters are, for the most part, dry, cold, crisp, with some sun, unlike the dreary, East Coast, brutal, cold-to-the-bone, miserable winters. And our summers — hot, but not scorching. And when there are those rare scorchers, it isn’t all that sweaty, grimy and humid due to the dry climate.

But now, tens of thousands of acres and acres of our beloved Colorado are burning, precisely because of that dryness. There are about 14 fires burning  in the state right now, with the terrifying one in the Springs being called “epic.”

Thirty-two thousand people have been evacuated from their homes. People, including the elderly, are displaced. Beautiful landscapes and beloved homes are being destroyed. Worst of all, hundreds of firefighters’ lives are at risk.

Fighting these 200-feet-high pillars of orange and yellow flames and the thick, opaque, huge, grey cauliflower-looking plumes of smoke, in dry searing triple-digit degree heat, the firefighters bear the weight of triple-digit poundage of firefighting gear. In the Rockies, no less, where the air is thinner and the sunlight’s intensity is greater.

It being one week to the Fourth of July, you think of fireworks as beautiful bursts of beauty in the sky that make you swell with American pride and joy. But all these fires seem like a sinister prelude to the Fourth. Needless to say, this is irrelevant to the tragedy unfolding, just a noticeable juxtaposition of timing, that’s all.

The rest of this article is available in the IJN’s print edition only. Contact Carol to order your copy at (303) 861-2234 or email carol@ijn.com.

Tehilla R. Goldberg

IJN columnist | View from Central Park

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