“Compared to some on the Island, I don’t feel I know much about fires. My first serious fire was probably Middle River a few seasons ago. It was quite an education. Since then I’ve learned so much more in terms of how fires are dealt with, but the education, I suspect, will never stop.
I’ve been looking at how the climate has been changing on our own property and then at the fires in the past few years; especially Mt Taylor—that was a very nasty fire. I knew this year was going to be bad because of how Mt Taylor behaved. Its ferocity was just nasty and that basically said to me, the shape of things to come. Then 2020 threw everything at us. It was just pretty full on.
I went out in an old farm ute with eight-hundred litres of water on the back, by myself. When I first got there, there wasn’t any organisation. Our property is right next to where the Duncan fire started. I just went in and took on what I could rationalise and manage. At 64, I don’t have much of an ego. I was scared shitless, but I still had to go. My love of the island and its wellbeing was more important.
I was there on my own until I bumped into Rodney Lade and he gave me directions of where I could be most helpful. I had no radio at the start, and I didn’t get one later on. I still don’t have a radio yet!
The way fires are fought needs to change. Looking back, in retrospect, this year felt futile. To me it was incredibly soul-destroying. I wonder if a lot of people, who would ordinarily go on trucks, will now prefer their own fire units.
Emotionally, I don’t feel very good going into the next fire season. For quite a while, after losing our place, I thought ‘is this really worth it?’”

Published by sabrinadavis5223

I am a German living in South Australia. We lost our home and farm in the Kangaroo island summer bushfires. I love travelling, reading, beach walks, board games, watching movies and spending time with my family.

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