Tuesday, September 14, 2010

What would you save?

This past Sunday Mr. Potts and I were enjoying a quiet afternoon. I was dozing off while he was watching the Panthers (lose badly) and keeping track of his Fantasy Football team.

I was woken up by our doorbell ringing sharply. It wasn't the leisurely ring of a neighbor bringing over freshly made cookies or bread (wish that actually happened!); it was a sharp ring of panic.

I pulled my blanket over my head and started to doze back off when he came bounding back up the stairs, grabbed the fire extinguisher and told me to call 911 - our next door neighbor's unit was on fire.

I grabbed our phone and went out on the deck. Smoke was pouring out of her front door and I saw Mr. Potts and two of our neighbors run into her home. They came back out very quickly while I tried to answer the questions the 911 operator was asking me.

Sirens were roaring in the distance while our courtyard filled with smoke.

Neighbors were coming out of their homes, coming together in the courtyard to comfort our neighbor.

Two fire engines pulled up & while they unrolled the hoses, Mr. Potts was talking to them about what happened. After one of our neighbors sprayed the fire, it apparently rolled up from her stove which set off the sprinklers.

Her home was safe, albeit with a bit of water damage.

We have a bit of water damage to our garage wall where the water leaked through from her unit.

No one was hurt.

In the aftermath, our neighbors gathered to talk and commiserate. We began to get to know each other.

Our neighbor will need new cabinets, but there was no life lost & no one was hurt.

That evening we opened up and laughed. We learned a little more about each other. And we made plans to do more things as a neighborhood.

I hugged my neighbor and told her that she should never hesitate to ring our doorbell. She looked slightly abashed and told me that she never wanted to bother anyone.

I hope she knows now that it isn't a bother. That's what our neighborhood should be about.

Getting ready for bed that night, I looked at Mr. Potts and asked what he would grab if that were to happen to us.

He looked around and said he'd make sure to save our babes.

We laughed & talked about how we need a sign. Hayden would never hesitate to go with someone. Pepe Cat? Well, the sign would read something like this:

"Fluffy orange cat in the house. Will not come if you call him. Will probably run and hide. Most likely under a bed. Grab him by the belly & run. He doesn't have front claws & isn't limber enough to really reach around and get you. But don't forget about him. He's pretty awesome & we want to keep him."

We laughed, but I still wonder what I'd save and what I'd realistically be able to. I don't know that I'd be able to, but as long as I'd have my family, I'd be whole.

PS: For those looking for Fall - Vermont has it. It will be in the 40's Wednesday night here in Burlington. I'll send a little your way.


Anonymous said...

I'm so glad no one was hurt! How scary!

I'd grab my kitty, the computer, and my box of cards and momentos from Brent's and my relationship. I think everything else is replaceable. I'd probably grab my pearls too...I haven't worn them very often, but they mean so much to me (30th b-day present from B).

Miss M! said...

How scary! I'm glad everyone was okay. That's one of my worst fears.

I'd grab my critters, my boy, and the laptop. EVERYTHING is in this bad boy and I'd cry if it were lost. We have a sticker in the window by our front door saying that we have two pets in the house as an alert for rescue workers, just in case.

Lindsey said...

Oh my goodness! That is so scary! Glad everyone is okay!

Ashley @ KiwisandCocktails said...

The good news everyone is ok!! Glad you guys came together.
I really dont know what I would save...probably my computer and my portable hard drive with pictures from the past 5 years, but also as many photo albums as possible from pre-digital days.

Ashley @ KiwisandCocktails said...

oh, and obviously my dog, but she would proably run out on her own and wouldnt need my help to get out! :)

Anonymous said...

Hubs and I have discussed this a few times. I say aside from getting my husband, I'd grab a couple pillow cases from our chest and shove the cats in the cases, grab my flash drive (dissertation is on there), and run like hell. As long as I've got him and the cats, I'll be alright. So really, just him and the animals, because we're family!!

Amber said...

We'd definitely get all three furbabies out then probably grab the laptops and the box with all of the "important" papers. My sister's house burned down about 6 months after her husband died and she wasn't able to save much of anything so I have a very healthy fear/respect of fire. I'm so glad everything turned out ok for your neighbor! xoxo

Brittany Ann said...

I know this is wrong, but my first gut reaction would be Marvin! I'd grab him, yell at my hubs, and run. Poor pup probably wouldn't figure it out!

Mrs.LifeAccounts said...

wow that's crazy, I'm glad no one was hurt and the damage was fairly minimal! I have no idea what I'd grab...probably computers and our files of important documents...really I'd hate to lose any of it (i'm very attached to my stuff) but if I had my husband safe, I don't know if we have anything else that can't be replaced by something that is at least similar.

Dee Stephens said...

Brad is starting to work out of Burlington, VT for the next five weeks. In on Monday out on Thursday nights. You guys should meet for a beer! LOL!! I plan on going up one week and we're going to make a weekend out of it. Hear it's gorgeous.
As for the fire.. glad no one was hurt.
After Katrina I thought a lot about what I would take with me.
Pets of course but also pictures. Old ones and of course wedding..those are things that can't be replaced.

Anonymous said...

I'm glad that everyone is okay and that everyone was brought closer together! It's nice to have good neighbors.

MCW said...

Thank goodness it did not get worse!

I think I would save all of my photo albums...and my contact lenses and make-up. Just in case I had to stay somewhere with cute boys :)

Kassie said...

I'm glad no one was hurt! My goodness! I have to say I'd grab photos and any antiques I could carry. Everything else I guess I could get again. We had a fire once and had to replace that stuff. :(

Jenny DB said...

Glad to hear neighbor is safe. I would certainly save my pups. Everything else, replaceable. BTW please don't send fall our way. Mom's big bday is tomorrow and praying for NOT-RAIN and NOT-40s.

Lil' Woman said...

It's scary, first hand knowledge here. I'm glad Mia and FMIL got out of our house safely but besides fam and pets I would want to save pictures.