BIG SUR, Calif. - Christian Van Allen had a special connection to the house he lost in the fire because he built it from the ground up.
"It was so hot that if I didn't leave, I mean, I actually ruined a pair of glasses, it melted my glasses so it was apparent it was time to go," Van Allen said.
Van Allen thought he was going to be able to save the house he built in 1985. "Classic view from every window in the house," he remembers. But his efforts were no match for the Pfeiffer Fire.
"When the fire hit me it hit me from two different directions, it was very hot and very fast," he said.
His two story home burnt to a crisp. As he walked through the rubble, Van Allen says there was a lot of himself that burned with it.
"I think I am just going to miss the intimacy of it being that it was so much myself," he said.
All that he was able to salvage was the concrete wall that surrounded his home, he said. If he gets the chance to build his house again, he' says he's going to build it with more concrete.
"To be completely honest with you I'm looking forward from here," Van Allen said. It's a little too soon to for me to take in the loss."
For someone who lost virtually everything in this fire, Van Allen didn't lose his positive outlook, he says there's no use living in the past.
"The moment we have is right now," he said. "And our tomorrows are going to look a whole lot like the dreams that we have right now."
Thursday, at a community meeting, residents were told they can go back to their homes but told not to start the cleanup process. That's because a Haz Mat team is supposed to arrive on Jan. 6 and 7 to remove any hazardous or flammable material.
As for this weekend, emergency crews will continue to monitor the area to make sure the fire doesn't reignite.