The first time we went ring shopping ( my soon to be husband) Gerard's house on the top of the hill burnt down. Who would have thought? Was it a sign, I wondered?
I had made it known I didn’t want to live there, but I surely didn’t wish for this to happen.
On our way back from shopping downtown, we noticed a big cloud of smoke had formed over the mountains. From that very moment, I knew Gerard’s property was going to be affected, even though the fire was several miles away. Gerard didn’t buy into my suspicions. He thought I was being silly. Yes, I do tend yo overreact.
Soon after, we found out that most of Malibu and Topanga was burning. I couldn’t help but feel guilty because, in a way, I had wished for this house to be gone. I felt like it was standing in our way. Could I have been the one who lit the match? Just food for thought.
There was a certain peacefulness in the woods around his home. It was far enough away that you couldn’t hear the sounds of traffic and congestion. There, the outside world did not exist. It had a lot of great qualities, but I wasn’t interested in utilizing them. Being a city gal...a little congestion never bothered me.
As we continued making our way back, we were mesmerized by the massive flames. Gerard dropped me off and then went up the hill to see if the fire had reached his home.
The rest of the afternoon, I waited to hear some news from him. The media was going crazy reporting the spread of the fire. It was enough to make anyone a bit tense. By nightfall, I still had not heard from Gerard. When I did phone him, he was still really casual about it all. I would have been just a bit more dramatic...what a shock!
After a while, I really started to worry for his safety. I called him several times, begging him to get down the hill. At the time, the entire canyon was burning up and Gerard was out on his patio, drinking beers with his brother Lance, who had come to his rescue. Rather than rushing around collecting his belongings, they sat watching the flames approach his backyard. Let's face it, I would have been gathering my shoes!!!
After a couple of beers, some pasta and packing, he made it down the hill to safety. He didn’t get to my place until after nine o’clock that night. I was ready to kill him, though I knew once I saw him, the anger would go away. As the hours passed, I feared I would never see him again. It made me realize how crucial he was to my life. It felt like a test. Or so I thought?