Around here it is harvest time. We live in an area where wheat is all around us (yes the very wheat that I'm allergic to:). I love how pretty and green it is in the spring and the golden color it gets to be when it's ripe and ready for harvest.
But the one thing about living with agriculture all around that has always made me nervous is once the crops are harvested, how dry the land is. Fire is a huge concern this time of year, usually it is fireworks we are worried about right about now. We have never been directly effected before this year, this weekend was the first time we had a close call. We took a day-trip on Saturday and when we came back home that afternoon, we noticed lots of smoke. Farmers often burn off their wheat stubble, but this day was very windy and we thought someone had a field get out of control. This first fire was about 5 miles from our house, so not a direct concern for us, but we drove around to see what was going on.
We first realized it was not a controlled fire when we saw that one of the fields being burnt was uncut wheat, about 200 acres of it!! We then saw that along-side the highway was a camper that had been burnt to the ground and some people standing around a truck that was also partially burnt (just the back of the truck, no one was hurt). That's when I noticed that there was another fire closer to our place, so we drove home, hoping that it wasn't as close as it looked. The second fire was directly north of our house, by about 1 mile, but thankfully the train tracks and a paved road kept it from jumping across and getting any closer to us.
All in all, around 600 or so acres burnt, but no one got hurt. Only 2 houses were in danger, and only bits of their yards ever caught on fire, the houses were all safe. I think this year we will skip doing any fireworks at all as we've had enough fire for the time being!! :)