in Weather/Wildfire

Laura Hinerfeld and her husband, Dale Geist, never thought they’d leave California. But after the Complex fires of 2017 killed 24 people, ravaged 7,000 structures and crept too close to their house in Sonoma, they talked about it for the first time.

Then came the amalgamation of other disasters, signaling to Hinerfeld and Geist that it’s time to go. The 100-degree heat. The rolling blackouts. The weeks of horrible air quality. The pandemic. How do you re-create the camaraderie of a ceramics workshop on Zoom or the gargantuan meals they like to feast on at El Molino Central, their beloved tortilleria? It’s decided: You don’t.

New England is the obvious choice for a second start. Life there may not be as enchanting as in California, but they’d rather have to gear up for rising sea levels than wildfires. Plus, this is where both Hinerfeld and Geist spent their early years.

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