An editorial by Mel Rothenburger.
NOT TO WORRY, the eagles are ooooookay!
Oh, yeah, and there was a big wildfire that could have burned down a lot of houses, too.
But back to the eagles. I’m just kidding, of course. If the East Shuswap Road wildfire had gotten away, it could have spread to properties along the South Thompson River, including Sun Rivers, and reached many others over the other side of the hill. The entire city had a front-row seat as smoke covered the sky and assaulted the nostrils. It was all anyone could think about.
But in the middle of it all, there were the eagles. For a few tense hours, worries about the possible loss of homes were replaced with concern about the eagles.
There they were, those eaglets in that big nest on top of a big old, dead pine tree. Hearts sank as flames caught hold of the tree and began working their way up the tinder-dry trunk toward the nest.
But then the cavalry arrived. They wore the uniforms of the BC Wildfire Service and Kamloops Fire Rescue, aiming a stream of water into the tree.
At first, it looked as though the water wouldn’t reach high enough and be powerful enough to overcome the flames in time. But it quickly took a turn for the better.
At last word, all is fine with the eagles, and the eaglets have been attempting some flying lessons under the watchful eye of their parents.
Wildfires are terrifying things. The gratitude and admiration we feel for the men and women who fight those fires for us is overwhelming at times. We marvel at the skill and courage of the pilots who douse the flames with water and fire retardant.
But the eagles gave the ground crews a chance to show what they’re made of, and we all gave a sigh of relief at the outcome. And it reminded us that people are good at heart, always willing to take time away from our own worries to care about other living beings.
Mel Rothenburger’s Armchair Mayor editorials appear Mondays through Thursdays on CFJC- TV. His Armchair Mayor column is published Saturdays on ArmchairMayor.ca and CFJC Today. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.