Thursday, July 25, 2013

The Good and the Bad and The Ugly

OK, so I stole the tile but I am trying to find some good from the ugly fire I had.  The saddest thing is the loss of my Blueberry plants, five years of nurturing them gone to pretty much ashes.  Over five feet tall and almost as wide and producing abundantly.  At least I got this year's pickings, so that is a plus.
"What happened?" you might ask as I am still asking that question.  A five gallon container of gas, about 2/3 full and next to it oil soaked rags, the perfect combination.  Call me an idiot, I am still doing that.
On "my list" yesterday morning, get rid of the gags and put the gas can away, safe away from the shop in a little outbuilding where it belonged.  On my list, but first was a stop for lunch.  Big mistake.
After lunch on my way to my shop, all of 100 feet in my backyard, I see a wall of flames about 20' into the air.  Flames caressing the eaves to my shop roof!  I ran, yes, ran to the pool, as close as I could get, turned on the garden hose and watered the fire as it laughed at me.  Dancing and yelling and screaming and hot, the water from the hose was a joke.  My efforts as a fireman were doing nothing to the flames so I changed tactics and sprayed the eaves and the roof where the fire had every intention of going.  I heard sirens and within three minutes I had eight fireman in my backyard, two fire trucks, the big hook and ladder type and an ambulance in the front of my house.  It was funny, they were admiring my little swimming (half lap only) pool and looking at my metal work!  The fire was like a chimney, about five feet in diameter and maybe 10 feet tall, but roaring.  No one got excited.  Two of them went to the street and returned with large fire extinguishers and proceeded to empty them on this burning inferno.  Pretty much nothing happened.  I was told to stand back and relinquish my weapon.  I didn't have time to explain the "stand your ground" laws as they took the garden hose from my hands and told me to move away!  I don't think they were armed but they were suited up for a fight, covered head to toe in firegear and ready to do battle.  I moved back as instructed.  Two other firemen were snaking 150 feet of firehose, much bigger than mine!
My reaction really would have been to just let the fire burn out.  I had saved the roof, well, maybe, maybe not.  Anything could happen.  You could see right through the gas can by now and clearly there was a couple gallons still in it.  "They only blow up in the movies," the fireman with the nozzle said as he turned on this humongously large water hose and everything went flying!  Tons of instant water and, sending the gas can flying, a wall of flame like I have never seen before!  Maybe 20 feet long and, like a tunnel of flame, five feet wide and ten feet tall, towards my studio and right along the blueberry plants!  Maybe, just two seconds but they were flames of hell, followed by a wall of water and it was out.  Just like that.  Faster than a microwave!  The blueberries suffered a death blow from which they will never recover.  That is the ugly.  I love my garden and feel responsible for its care.  I will take them out this weekend.  Looking in that direction, once one of the nicest views, is now depressing.
My studio door was open  as was the door to my office and all the smoke and there was tons of it, found its way there.  Leaving traces, like little powdery angel dust all over everything!
So, I get to paint my studio!  That is the good, I guess.  It is empty now and the floors are swept and mopped.  Art is off the wall. A little smoky smell is good, right?  Like art around a campfire!  Anyway, tomorrow I will paint and when that is done, attack the office.  Emptying it 100% and cleaning, mopping and painting there also!  I built this office over 20 years ago and it has never been painted!
 Roasted Blueberries?
 My view from my studio!
Now is a good time.
 The ivy is green in the background. That is one tough plant!
 The gas can and the fire was mostly on top of this table.
No one was hurt, my tomatoes are safe.  I get to clean and polish and paint and organize, so that will be the good that will come of this!  At least I finished painting the house before this happened. Timing is everything!
 The leaves are supposed to be green!


Barbra Joan said...

OMG !!!!!!!! Jerry I'm glad that your alright.
Blueberries will grow again.

Barbra Joan said...

Problems with my yahoo mail.
Can't read any, can't write.
Wanted to know about the fire and how everything is going .. so sorry
hope your ok..

Jerry Carlin said...

Thanks, Barbra! Studio is painted already! Blueberries will get gone tomorrow. and now I am emptying my office!!! hasn't been painted in over 20 years!!! Thanks, Barbra, I think you have to die to get a comment around here!

Barbra Joan said...

Jerry, Don'T do THAT!
I'm still here!
Plant more blueberries..
You know that quote on my blog about planting the apple tree.
Well just go ahead and plant ...