Can I ask if you lived on a Forest Service compound, or in a town with people who didn’t wear green pants and t-shirts everyday? You’re stories of the way your house looks in fire season is great. Early on, did you have other wives around to keep you company? or just to “check in” with?
I was fortunate in that there was an old retired logger who still lived in the abandoned logging camp where the Johnsondale Forest Service station was in the Sierras. He had a wonderful, wise and kind wife who’d check on me to make sure I was okay. Other times I’d drag my ass over to her house and just sink into one of her overstuffed chairs and sit there all bleary eyed. She’d let me feel sorry for myself for a bit, give the kids something to play with, then launch into one of her stories in such an animated way…it was wonderful. I’d look at her…all grisled and laughing…and realize she’d made it through some pretty rough spots and she was still kind. Her eyes still danced. I decided then that I very much wanted to grow old that way…to be laughing and warm and kind…not angry and resentful. I think I’m landing somewhere in the middle.
Here’s to keeping our eyes open for things to laugh about!