Last Thursday we were thinking finally rain is coming. We were sitting in our hamacs, drinking coffee and watching the mountainline on the other side of our valley. It seemed that after eight weeks of no rain, a big thunderstorm from the ocean was on the way. But when the clouds arrived in the valley, we realized that they somehow were smelling strange. Like smoke or like fire.
The next two days were already apocalyptic, but under a red sun and in the shadow of the smoke we were still optimistic. Then on Saturday the flames came.
Actually we were in the middle of a sea of fire. The whole Serra de Arada was burning. Up to the evening we were preparing firelines. In the night we could do nothing but watching the flames slowly coming down the mountain.
The next morning the battle began. The flames were only a few meter away from the houses of our neigbours and many times it seemed the valley would be lost. But finally we made it and on Sunday afternoon the fire was more or less under control. At least we thought. Then the flames came from the other side. Bigger and stronger, like a monster, nothing could stop them. We got evacuated and spent the night in our car, hoping for the best. And well, if you love life, life loves you. On Monday we realized, the fire was gone and our land is untouched, maybe the last unburned piece of forest in the whole district of Viseu.
But we think everything can be changed into something good. Why not taking this fire as a turning point? Why not starting to plant oaks and fruit trees instead of building highway next to already empty national roads. Why not starting to build up a healthy forest with wildlife instead of growing and cutting eucalyptus for toiletpaper. Why not trying to save one of the last paradise in Europe?
Love and kisses,
Joshua and Zoé