It was a Friday and I was just walking around campus. It had been a strange time, honestly it still is. A lot of our minds were still on it. It still felt so weird to be back on campus but it also felt good.
On my way walking around campus I noticed something pretty cool. Someone was playing guitar and a group of people are watching this guy sing his heart out.
I thought it was a just a campus stranger who just liked walking around and playing his instrument for everybody to hear.
Well, it was… Sorta.
It turns out it was Larry Sawyer an IT guy that plays music for fun. He was at Chico State because his wife requested that he play for the students as a way to relax after the two week break and fire.
I didn’t know that though.
It turns out that they lost their home in Paradise.
At the time I interviewed them they were planning in staying at a hotel in Orville.
I felt bad as I was asking them questions. I didn’t like pushing them with these kind of questions, thankfully everybody made it out safe.
Larry started the band Stoning Giants. They were on tour in Chico a while back. I didn’t really think about what kind of music I would find in this town so I kept asking questions but kept getting reminded of what happened a few weeks ago.
While I was asking Larry these questions I remember the environmental pretty well, I think I do.
It looked like rain had just cleared up and the trees on campus were colored yellow to orange. I was surrounded by grass on the south side of Butte Hall and I think it was cold. It was hard to think we weren’t that far from a destroyed town, I didn’t know how to feel in this moment but I wanted to feel happy that they made it out alive.
Larry told me that one the songs he was playing reminded him of the fire.
“I couldn’t even play that at first right after the fire”, said Sawyer.
I hope you guys find a new home.