For all of the locals who evacuated, I know that it is a hard thing to do, leaving the comfort of home and community, not knowing if your home will be there when you return — the anxiety, the stress of being off the Hill.

Now that you have gone through the experience, you may say I won’t go next time we evacuate, but as one who stayed, I have to give you some facts.

1. There were tons of fire equipment on our little streets and no room for our cars to be in their way.

2. Most all businesses were closed after the first day of evacuation.

3. When the plumes of smoke shifted and came over the town, the ash and burnt embers, the size of a quarter at times, dropping on the dry ground everywhere let you know what they mean by spot fires.

4. The third day in the morning, the smoke laid down in the valley of Idyllwild. It was thick and extremely hard to breathe (dangerous to your health).

So I would think twice about staying next time. It is better to be safe and stressed than unsafe and stressed. What will be will be and you can’t change it.

Ed Reed