I've been overwhelmed with the news about Fort McMurray this week: photos, videos, and stories of sadness, grief, total loss and utter devastation.
But the fact remains that outside of a tragic traffic accident, 88,000+ people made it safely out of a terrifying situation. That's not a little thing.
The Emergency Services at every level are proving themselves beyond question. They're working 24/7 while their own families leave, their homes possibly gone. All levels of government are working together to do the best they can in a terrifying, incomprehensible situation. One that isn't actually getting any better from the sounds of things.
I can't really afford it, but I donated to the Red Cross for the relief effort. I decided to put my money where my mouth is. There are thousands right now who have nothing and I'm very fortunate to have all my comforts - whatever I deem those to be. With the Feds matching $ for $ that means I doubled my donation to $400. Maybe someone can get some groceries with that, or a new pair of shoes and some clothes for the kids. A dog or cat or horse can get a new blanket or bed. Or a hotel bill can be paid. Or a new book can be bought.
Frustration is high. Anger is high. Fear is rampant. Rumours abound and communication is garbled. Keyboard warriors abound - politicising, finger pointing, blaming, assuming, undermining, etc. Think what you want about the government at every level, love them or hate them, but what matters most is that everyone is safe. The hardest part will be post-fire, when the damage is assessed and the rebuilding starts.