I am really thankful that beyond my family's safety, our collection of things weren't burnt or close to danger. It is convenient.
I've re-discovered my negative collection: Destruction Derby night at the Stanislaus County Fair, 1999. Wow! These weren't in tidy black negative binders with the others I packed off.
I was at peace with and resolved that our house would not be when we returned. All that was irrelevant compared to our safety.
I spent a week following our return unpacking and otherwise rounding up all of my stray negatives, a photographer's gold mine of images: China, Cambodia, Japan, France, Internment, thesis research, and these demolition derby images. I guess didn't even grab my 'important' Internment project pictures. It wouldn't have mattered that they were destroyed, a minor set-back, they continue to exist to be photographed again.
I came away from the experience with a new appreciation for our 'things' and am making with preparing for a future evacuation, much like our neighbors. I have also examined my attachment to material goods... I had everything I needed, even if we didn't return to pack; my family's safety was all that mattered. Everything in our house could be replaced, it's just stuff.
Just like these derby cars: repaired, repainted, destroyed. It's just stuff.