Soemtimes, your friends are strangers who let you live at their house who then became friends, and sometimes, they are goats. I spent some time last summer in Ojai for the Ojai playwright’s conference. Local families adopt and house playwrights for the few weeks while they develop their plays, and I hit the jackpot with mine. The Sengstakens gave me a temporary home on their ranch, complete with lucky chickens and horses and sunsets and wine and GOATS, namely Jacob, a dog-like friend who asked me each morning how my play was going, but you know, with his  eyes.

A few days ago, when the Thomas fire threatened their home the family had to flee,  south to Oxnard. They brought Jacob with them.

IS THIS NOT THE VERY PICTURE OF OPTIMISM, OF FRIENDSHIP, OF RESILIENCE? I know I’m still only five years into my So Cal life, but I am starting to feel its calm, its resolve. Burning world? Meh. It’s just things.  Grab what you love that fits in your car. Deep breath, smile. Drive to beach.

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