Monday, March 30, 2009

"9-1-1 What is your emergency ?"

That is the call I made this weekend. Scary.
We came home from the city at about 8pm on Saturday night. I commented to Charlie that I could smell beach fire ... didn't think too much of it because it had been a beautiful day & it was quite possible that someone did have a beach fire. Charlie fell asleep in his chair because he had a bad headache. I read, slept, read, ... At midnight I decided to just hunker down and sleep on the couch. It was too hot though so I decided it would be best to go upstairs. I went out to check the furnace and then get ready for bed. As I passed the dining room I noticed it was super foggy ... but wait ... it didn't look right. There was a real glow behind the fog. I peered out the window ... and, oh my god ... I ran through the living room yelling "There is something on fire down the road". Nice way to wake up poor Charlie ! I ran outside to see better ... still wasn't sure if it wasn't perhaps just a huge bonfire. We jumped in the car & drove down to be sure. We didn't have to go far to see flames licking upwards at the sky. I took note of the nearest house number & then we roared home to call 9-1-1. The 911 operator asked me the question that was gnawing away at my stomach "Was there anyone in the house?". That was my fear but the house was too far engulfed in flames to be able to go in. I knew that the owner sometimes stayed next door and they often knew his whereabouts. We went next door & I banged on the door. I felt badly waking them & probably scaring them. But they were great. Happily they knew that he hadn't been around for quite some time & someone else had bought his place to tear it down.We all stood in the backyard in our pjs watching this unique house burn to the ground.
The whole thing was really upsetting. To see a house - what had been someones home - burn to bits is so sad. And to fear that the owner might be inside - indescribable. I felt sick because I knew that the smell I commented on at 8pm had actually been that house. To learn that he was gone was an indescribable relief. No one knows where he is but at least he wasn't home.So it all ended about as well as it could.

Today the drama is flooding ... As I type this, a backhoe is outside trying to find the drain that will release our driveway, parking lot, and storage area from "Lake-the-Town-Should-Have-Maintained-It-A-Long-Time-Ago" or at least from "Lake-I-Called-Yesterday". What should be a simple operation of clearing the culvert has now come to involve chopping out pieces of sidewalk ...hmm.. now I'm no engineer but ...

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