No Fire Last Night | September 17, 2010

I am happy to report that I wasn’t awoken by any house fires in the area last night. This was in contrast to the night before when, at 4:30, I was stirred by a weird cycle of sounds that made me think of fireworks: First a fizzing crackling rolled around and then there would be a cluster of two or three snap cracks at a much louder volume. I ignored the noises of oddness as best I could and then thought I should investigate, in case it was a tree breaking up in the high winds and threatening to skewer our house with one of its sagging limbs.

Looking out across the small horseshoe valley that our short road and two others curve around, there was an orange ball starting to grow. Even without my glasses I could tell it was a fire, there’s simply something unmistakable about that brilliant dance.

When Rach arose I went and found my specs, and we watched as the flames got higher and higher, bright enough even at distance to make my face flicker in the glow. A huge dark cloud spewed into the sky and the air began to fill with a thin haze. Has someone actually called the fire brigade, we wondered, while watching someone’s wooden home being devoured.

Then we heard a fire engine’s siren and saw its lights. Within a couple of minutes the blaze was clearly under control, virtually gone from our perspective.

It took only ten minutes from me first hearing the roar and crackle of the fire to seeing it climb into a wall of flame, and then be doused almost out of existence.

A couple of hours later the heavens opened and a torrent of water poured from the sky. Nice work nature, best work on the timing though.

Judging by the lack of news reports, no one was seriously hurt. Suffice to say, it’s new batteries in smoke detectors time in chez Braun!


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