Wednesday, May 28, 2008

They were having a picnic

I looked out the window this afternoon and noticed that the small bonfire across the road was getting awfully big, so I went out to my front porch to investigate and saw that the fire marshal was talking to the folks and I assumed asking them to douse the fire because it was located right below all of our electric, phone & cable lines. They quit feeding the fire and it soon died down, so I went back inside. I also noticed that a neighbor had gone home and was crossing the road with water hoses draped over his shoulders...I assumed it was to put the fire out.

How wrong I was.

I was answering an email and suddenly saw heavy plumes of dark smoke rolling across the road. I again thought that it must be the water being put on the flames causing all the smoke. The smoke was getting thicker & thicker, and the man with the water hose was squirting water high up into the trees, and now I could see flames shooting into the air. Lots and lots of flames, but not where the fire had been. This time I grabbed my camera and headed out to get a closer look.

The men had moved the fire to an old abandoned house, beneath some lovely trees. Well, at the time they were lovely trees, but now they are heavily scorched trees with blackened leaves that now cover all of our yards. Tomorrow they won't look so pretty.
There were several men taking care of the fire and at times they ran around screaming for everyone to, "get over here quick! and bring the water hose." The roaring fire jumped to a neighbors fence row and burned down a straight line of leaves heading for the neighbors house. They worked quickly and put that fire out when another grass fire would start somewhere else. I kept wondering why the fire marshal had given them permission to burn this house down without any professional supervision. It was a very chaotic scene and here it is almost 10:00 PM and the fire is still burning.

The old house sat down over a large embankment on the other side of the road directly across from our house, and there is a small marshy pond between us. I could feel the heat from the fire while standing in my front yard and I wondered how the little pair of mallard ducks who lived in the marsh were doing. Hopefully they flew away, but I wasn't so sure if their ducklings could fly yet. Jimmy & I watched baby birds being fed by their parents yesterday, while the babies sat on tree branches and I hope that they were able to escape all of the heat from the fire. I hope that this morning was the day that they learned to fly. The neighbor across the road also has cats and the old abandoned house is the perfect place for a cat to hide her litter. Hopefully all the commotion around this old house for the past week, caused the cats to move their babies to a safer place.

Even though the old house stood there abandoned for several years, and its family had long died, it was still sad to see it go up in flames. The circle has now been completed.

Have you ever wondered who walked & played in your yard before you? And what kind of house they lived in and were they a happy & large family? I think about these things each time I pass an old abandoned house, and sometimes I imagine them running and playing in the yard. Or being called in for supper, seated around a big wooden table with their dad at the head of the table and mom bending over him to give him a gentle kiss as she places the food on the table. She's a stay at home mom and works very hard.


Tomas Dennis said...

The fire looked very near to you. I assume you are fine now that the fire is not so big.

jellyhead said...

What a fierce fire. Luckily things didn't end badly.

I look at houses, too, and wonder who once lived there. I also love to walk in the evenings (though I rarely do so now, with kids to care for), and get glimpses of peoples lives through the lit windows.

judypatooote said...

What a great post always scares me....after 9/11 I had this dream that the oil refineries blew up, and flames jumped from house to house getting closer, and my girls all grown and didn't even live that close were with me, and when I woke up, my heart was really beating...I can't imagine why the fire marshall let them do that....especially when there are a lot of trees and brush around....nice pictures, and I am glad, or should I say I hope it's out..... judy

Rachel said...

I am glad they didn't let the fire get out of control. I wonder why the fire marshall allowed it too. So sad to see old houses burn like that. I agree with you. When I see them I think of the children running and playing and folks sitting on the porch and all the events that went on at those homes over the generations.

I passed an award to you on my blog. You might already have it though!

alice said...

What a wonderful post, but a sad story. I will be back to read you some more.

Susie said...

That had to be so scary having the fire that close, and how sad to see the old house burned now.
It's like a little bit of history is now gone.

Alipurr said...

very scary, hope they got the fire out

... Paige said...

You snapped some good photos. Fire is always scary, it goes where it desires and consumes what it is hungry for.
Please give us an update when you get the chance and tell us the ducklings are fine.

Kerri said...

I would be most uncomfortable watching those men with only garden hoses (I assume) trying to contain that huge fire.
Yes, it seems very strange (and not at all sensible) that the fire marshall gave them permission to do that without supervision.
You got some great pics!
You have such a kind heart to think of all the little creatures. I hope they all survived the maelstrom.
It's fun to imagine the history behind old houses.