Wednesday, January 19, 2005
The stench of the smoke everywhere in the city is choking - there is no escape. Pity those with respiratory conditions - it is uncomfortable enough for those of us with better health.
Deliberately lit bushfires are not uncommon in Perth - growing up in the hills of Armadale, every afternoon on the way home it was a case of "spot the latest fire", watching smoke curl up from one hill or another. The primary school on the same hill as mine was a common target, or rather, the bushland surrounding it. But never have the fires been so big (or so many at once) as we have experienced first on Sunday and again today.
Walking outside is unreal - it's almost like a holocaust, with limited vision across a yellow-brown, wispy world. Vision is limited, and the air is thick and hard to breathe.
The smoke and ash is annoying, but we are the lucky ones in the city. Houses have been lost. The Rotary Youth Leadership Awards camp on in our district this week were among those who had to be evacuated from the hills. While we haven't lost any human lives, who knows how many animals have been killed while their habit has been destroyed?
It is beyond my understanding how anyone could deliberately do such a thing. One hopes the perpetrator is caught very, very soon.