JoAnne Pavin welcomes Nicole Sallak Anderson, a novelist and author of "Wildfire: Losing Everything, Gaining the World" to the podcast where they discuss the book’s importance in light of the recent Maui fires and during the age of natural disasters. Nicole reflects on her experience during the 2020 wildfires and expresses gratitude for having shelter and overcoming the challenges of rebuilding her life over the past three years.
In August of 2020, Nicole and her family lost their home, pets, and all their belongings to the CZU Lightning wildfire in Northern California. Many of her essays since that pivotal event have focused on rebuilding a life from ashes, as well as the environmental and societal impacts of housing in an age of climate disaster. Her memoir, Wildfire: Losing Everything, Gaining the World, shares this journey with readers. Wildfire is a story of rage and despair, guilt and hope in the face of an environmental disaster. It is about the sacrifices it takes to be a steward rather than an owner of this beautiful planet we call home.
In part one of the podcast, Nicole shares a mix of gratitude and longing for what was lost in the CZU Lightning Fire complex of 2020 as well as her excitement for new possibilities. The conversation delves into previous wildfires in California and the specific fire that destroyed Nicole's neighborhood. She emphasizes the importance of listening to intuition and discusses her background in technology before immersing herself in nature. Nicole also shares their experience of dealing with the aftermath of a tragedy and the importance of waiting and creating space for expansion in life.
She emphasizes the importance of connecting with nature, listening to the land or what she refers to as “sessions with the land” during the healing process. In part two of the podcast, Nicole shares her journey of dealing with natural disasters, including the challenges of obtaining permits for tiny homes on wheels and losing personal belongings, including a beloved cat named Sebastian.
In part two, the conversation covers topics such as insurance claims, finding temporary housing, dealing with government paperwork, and navigating the aftermath of a natural disaster. Nicole emphasizes the loss of personal belongings and the importance of forming support groups for those who have experienced similar losses. Coping mechanisms, including attending grief groups or therapy sessions, using weighted blankets, and writing, are discussed. She also shares their current feelings of missing certain aspects of their pre-fire life while focusing on new possibilities, including writing projects and living in a tiny house with bees.
The podcast ends with JoAnne and Nicole expressing their strong connection to a book that explores various emotions and societal issues and hopes to spread its powerful messages.
Friday Evening Nicole will kick off the weekend with an inspiring talk on how to let go, embrace the moment, and listen-Listen to nature, the divine, and our intuition. A signed Hardcover Copy of Wildfire is included for all guests.