A House on Fire

That eventful day I could still remember that it was at 6. 50am just as I about to leave my house to school I heard siren growls and blares, and engine howls – with red light snap on – its way passing my house. Lazy smoke curls out the second story of a commercial block. The engine pulls up and the firemen are jumping off like ship rats. A flame exploded downward; all the building’s windows blow out and it’s like the sky erupted for all the firemen; all them, including the spectators, scramble and ran and dodge and duck the burning hailstorm.

The burning hailstorm falls and pelts the ground around them. Plaster, wood, and something metal cracks against the pavement and spins slowly. The brownstone fire quickly transforms itself into whirling firestorm and noisy clouds of dirty white steam. Tongues of flame rocket skyward through ragged holes. Black clouds drift murderously; roofing tars bubble and hiss as the roof itself groans like a comatose dinosaur, reminding you the whole thing could go any minute — and you with it. The walls howl in bestial agony. It is the most horrifying, and wonderful thing I have ever seen.

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The fighters shrug and pull their helmets down tight, expecting the worst. They opens up the nozzle, turning loose a high pressure blast of water into the ceiling. The fire screams in manic anger and heaves a cloud of howling steam that whirls back and bakes them like lobsters. A window somewhere explodes. The fighter fights relentlessly for hours. Their dogged efforts eventually paid off. By evening the fire was tamed and put to rest. All the firemen were Two firemen, on shift, were assigned for fire watch throughout the night.