Last Friday I shadowed the Fire Effects crew to write an article about their work. The focus of their work is monitoring the effects of prescribed burns on vegetation, yet, they also respond to fires, amongst other things. With this dual role comes a need to be ready for practically anything. As a result, I expected a high stress atmosphere to constantly surround them. That couldn’t be further from what I experienced.

The crew was calm, cool, and collected. Rather than approaching uncertainty with stress, they approached it with a “whatever happens, happens” attitude.

The hours I spent with them were long. They were filled with a slow intentionality that reflected a desire both to carry out the work to the best of their abilities and to enjoy doing it.

I left with a newfound understanding of pace that emphasizes experience rather than circles around a watch.


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