Update – Saturday February 15th
Update – Friday February 14th
Update – Thursday February 13th at 8.00pm
The happiest album ever….
They say a picture is worth a thousand words, so what more can we say other than today we welcomed back some of our evacuated friends and moved others back to their usual paddocks. These images will truly go down in our memory as some of our happiest moments ever. See what you think, and we are sure you will never doubt that non- human animals are emotional creatures too!! To see the pictures please click here
Update – Thursday February 13th at 4.00pm
Today is the first time I have left the property since the fires commenced, save the few short respite dashes to check on animals at neighbouring properties whose owners had evacuated and were prevented from returning. The thought that we are almost home safe was brought to a rapid halt by the sight of six fire tankers sitting at the base of our road and a further four tankers and one support vehicle a little further away. It is however comforting to know that should there be another flare up the amazing CFA crew will be on hand to save us once again.
The sight on either side of the road as we drove was a moon scape of burnt out paddocks, destroyed fencing, downed and blackened trees, homes lost and dead stock. And the heart stopping images of a farmer walking amongst his sheep shooting the injured will haunt me forever. This sad reminder of just how close the fires came and just how lucky we are, is truly something I never wish to experience again. But despite the tragedy I saw surrounding me, I too saw hope. Crews already working on fencing, tractors clearing trees and volunteers crews assessing the damage. The fact that I am able to relay this story to you today is because the tireless and wonderful CFA volunteers kept us safe, please donate to them if you can. For more pictures please click here.
Update – Thursday February 13th at 11.30am
All quiet on the western front
and eastern, northern and southern. No new smoke or ash, no emergency service vehicles in the area, nor can they be heard in the distance. The odd chopper flies overhead every now and then. A rather uneventful night, save the flashing lights from vehicles in the early hours of this morning at our corner as tankers were refilled. With little to no wind again today and rain forecast for this afternoon we feel a great deal more comfortable but we know we can never be complacent. We have commenced moving some animals back to their paddocks and look forward to the return later today (all things going well) of some of our evacuated residents. Dare I say breakfast beckons….
Update – Wednesday February 12th at 10.30pm
Sorry, this will have to be quick as I still have a zillion things to do but I know how much Edgar’s Mission means to everyone and I never wish to let you down so here is our latest update. As we commence night four of our night watch rotation one could be forgiven for thinking calm has returned to the sanctuary. But life as we knew it will never be the same. One hears of these tragedies but nothing can prepare you for when you are thrust into ground zero. Today provided us with few dramas as we have become all too familiar with the constant ‘bloops’ coming from our phones informing of the latest fire conditions. A quick glance to see the location is ‘not ours’ brings a sigh of relief but then a sense of guilt for it means some other poor innocent will have their life, loves and home under threat. For now only the distant sound of vehicles putting out spot fires and building fire breaks can be heard, and these are nowhere as close as they were last night. We are none too sure if the air is actually clear of smoke or it is that we are just so used to it we no longer notice. There is however a distinct absence of the smoke haze that has engulfed the sanctuary for the last few days. Whilst sleep and my wonderful mattress beckon it will not be a deep one, but happy visions of Damian and his tanker pulling into our driveway with a little halo encircling the vehicle will remind me there is always hope in the darkest of situations. I take comfort too that some one is watching over us, I pray they continue to do so, and I also pray for rain.
Update – Wednesday February 12th at 9.30pm
At least I think it is Wednesday, I seem to have lost track of time. Rotation fire patrol throughout the night brought forth no bad news but sadly little sleep. The sounds of vehicles and machinery working throughout the night in the south east gave a sense of fear but also relief. Fear, in that the fire was still active but relief knowing the guys were out there working to halt the fire spread and build a fire break. Have I said how much we love the CFA? Smoke still fills the air but is definitely not as bad as previous days. The sounds of choppers over head is now routine, and so too the sight of fire vehicles zipping down the road, but we are still safe. With our water use stretched to the maximum over the last few days by way of watering the house roof and dampening down, water for our own personal use is greatly restricted (restricted shower use or short showers with a friend, peeing outside, no use of the washing machine, no washing of dishes-although Kyle and Peter tell me ‘that’s nothing new!’) and we give thanks that our power remains.
Little wind here this morning is welcomed and I am pleased to report my upgrade of bed from a yoga mat, pillow, with a newspaper over my face to a mattress borrowed from one donated to the animals is greatly appreciated. Sadly my bedroom is still a poultry refuge and the ducks are having a field day. All animals are safe, no injuries to report and are coping well. House still looks like a war zone but it remains unsafe to let the non-evacuated poultry outside.
Our thoughts go out to those who have lost their homes and animals and I cannot thank the amazing support team I have around me, you guys rock and give me inspiration.
It is times like this I am reminded of my dread of personal contact with people (for those who know me I am the non-huggy touchy feely type and rare is the time I tell people I love them) however over the last few days that has changed. Never before have I said ‘I love you’ to those around me as I embrace them with a big hug. Please let the lesson here be, tell those around you how much you love them for you never know when it will be too late. Stay safe, I love you all big time.
Ps, sorry for any typos I am way too tired.
NEWS FLASH!!!! Damian Laffan has just arrived with a tanker load of water, I think I am about to cry!!!!! And Damian is about to get a big hug!!!!!!!
Update – Tuesday February 11th at 10.30pm
Our fire watch patrol notation for just now is ‘all clear’. Watches will continue throughout the night. Despite another flare up from the Diggings Road fire (directly south of Edgar’s Mission) this afternoon the threat was very quickly controlled with tankers and water bombers. Once again the CFA have protected our community. To the many people who have offered to assist in evacuating our animals our sincere thanks indeed, however our area is under a police blockade. No one is allowed into the area and should we leave we will not be permitted to return. Here’s hoping for an uneventful night, calmer days, more sleep and RAIN, RAIN and more RAIN!!!
Thank you all once again for your good wishes and positive thoughts, we cannot tell you how much it means to us all!
Update – Tuesday February 11th at 8.30am
We are safe, for now. Another flare up from the south last night had us on high alert, with a vigilant fire watch rotation throughout the night. It is very odd seeing no poultry about the farm, they are either holed up in the house or have been evacuated. To say the house is an absolute mess is an understatement but the animals are safe and that is the main thing, we can always clean the house. Little wind here this morning gives us some relief and an eerie calm has descended on the farm. We remain on high alert as forecast winds for later today will pose more risk. Our fire plan is working well. We have been blown away by just how many people love and care for Edgar’s Mission as we do and we are sorry we have not been able to respond to your many calls and emails, our priority, as we are sure you will understand is to keep the animals safe (and stay awake!). We will endeavour to keep you updated throughout the day, and again we thank you all so very much for holding us in your thoughts.
Update – Monday February 10th at 6.15pm
CFA next door collecting water from dam and bombing with 2 choppers! Our thanks to the CFA – please keep us safe!
Update – Monday February 10th at 12.30pm
Local fires have reignited in our area. Enacting our fire plan now. We will update you as soon as we can. Please do not call!
For updates please check our Facebook Page
Update- Monday February 10th at 7am
We are all safe (for now), tired, exhausted but safe and alive. Sadly some close by in our area have lost their homes and we are unsure about their livestock. We do not know the full extent of damage to our area and are endeavouring to assess this now. We are thankful that our animals that were evacuated are safe, God bless those that assisted. However the fire threat is still in our area. Please do not attempt to come to farm it is not safe to do so. We will endeavour to keep you updated throughout the day. We cannot thank you all enough for your thoughts and we give thanks to the tireless work of the CFA.