Jillian R.
You know how if there's a fire, the fire alarm goes off and everyone runs out of the building and gather at an empty space nearby until further instructions?

Well here in the Middle East, that might not always be the case.

There was a fire in our building last Tuesday and we didn't even know about it. At about 6.15pm, as usual, the doggies were hanging out in Eric's study where there's a sofa/bed near the window; which happens to be their favorite spot to sit (or rather, stand on the hind legs) and look out the window. As their "mom", I would usually join them and ask "What are you looking at? What are the workers doing?". They usually lose interest after a while, get off, run around a bit and then jump back up for another look. That day they were staring out the window for a really long time. So, I got curious and went to look too.

That's when I saw about two firetrucks (and a little station wagon) lined up across the street. Then a few moments later a third one pulled up.

(Fire trucks across the street from our building)

(The third fire truck)

But what struck me as strange was that the firemen (and street spectators) were just standing there, staring up at our building.

 (Firemen starting to leave the scene. Moments ago, they were all staring up at our building)

(This is a favorite "hang out" spot for construction workers, the fire surely provided some entertainment. Oh, this is also Jester and Ginger's favorite pee-pee-doo-doo spot. Hmm...)

No one was spraying any water and of course, no ringing fire alarm. I immediately thought maybe someone fell off the building or committed suicide. Wouldn't you think that? It's the only logical explanation! So I grabbed Eric and we both headed downstairs to ask the watchmen what was going on.

Then, we were greeted by smoke in the hallway;


Okay, the smoke was faint and it doesn't really show in this picture. There was however a strong burned smell. The elevators seemed to be working and we are on the 1st Floor so we hopped into one.

When we got down to the lobby, there were firemen (just) standing around; chatting with each other. We asked the first one we saw if there was a fire, he said "Yes, but only small one, no problem". Really? There was a fire in the building - an apartment building and no one was evacuated? Great!

We went out to the streets and joined a few of our neighbors, it turned out that the fire was on the 10th floor, it was indeed a small one and it had been put out. No one was hurt.

However, what concerns me is that;
a) there was a fire in the building and we didn't know about it
b) no one hit the fire alarm - what if the fire grew and we only knew about it when we saw smoke in the apartment and it was too late?
c) if it was really just small fire, why were there at least 20-30 firemen and three firetrucks (and a small station wagon)?

Anyway, we spoke to the watchmen later that night and were told that;
a) the fire alarm never went off because they turned it off
b) why? Because people were smoking in the hallways and fire escapes and it could trigger the fire alarm all the time
c) they would turn on the fire alarm the next morning
d) no one should smoke in the hallways and fire escapes and people should not even burn incense in their own apartments because the fire alarm system is VERY sensitive and somehow smoke will seep out from under closed doors and trigger it

I've since then burned a huge amount of incense in the house and it hasn't triggered the fire alarm - YET.

Oh, it seemed that a news crew came that day after the fire was put out, but since we don't watch local TV, we'll never know if we were on the news.

(Another station wagon - belonging to the news crew)

Thus ends another unexplained story from the Middle East. Enjoy!
Tags | edit post
Rate This Entry 
0 Responses

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Creative Commons License
The Blog You Care About by Jillian is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.