24 February, 2016

Some Afternoon Excitement

Just a couple of hours ago, we had some excitement develop in the neighborhood. A wildfire developed from a semi-controlled burn and got all of us wound up. Yesterday, on the same lot, the guys that were chopping brush on the lot, lit a fire and stayed to supervise it.

Today was a bit different. After lighting the fire, they left for the day. Now, to Gringo sensibilities, that seems unconscionable to leave a fire unattended. Down here, it's pretty much SOP. Light the fire at the end of the work day and go home. It'll take care of itself and nothing bad will happen.

Except that the breeze started blowing a little stronger, moving the fire more or less north by northwest. From our vantage point on our porch, it looked like it was threatening Sarah's place.

Anyway, shortly after that, Vivien was out in the street looking at the fire. She called Lincoln Eiley, who is the listing agent for the property, to let him know that something was amiss with the fire. Five or so minutes later, Lincoln showed up with a couple of shovels. He and his passenger went into the bush and might have decided it was too much for them. This is just supposition on my part. Lincoln may have called the Corozal Fire Department, part of the Belize National Fire Service.

A pumper rig showed up and we could see a couple of guys in turnouts heading into the bush. Next thing we heard was the engine noise increased substantially.
Belize National Fire Service Pumper
We could see someone in the bush with an inch and a half or possibly a two inch hose, putting wet stuff on the red stuff. They appeared to be concentrating on the area near Sarah's place. I don't know if the fire actually made it onto her property.
The Fire Right From Our Gate

Anyway, shortly thereafter, it was all over. And about then, it started to drizzle a bit. What good timing. As far as we could tell, no real damage occurred. All's well that ends well. After that, Dianna and I headed in to have some nice cauliflower and shrimp soup for supper. During supper, we talked about how this reminded us a bit of when we first moved in to this property, Craig (who used to own this place and who, at that time, owned the properties across the street) had workers who lit a fire and left for the day.

Craig had to come back as the fire had developed into a real rip-snorter, with flames easily towering over the trees as it raced toward the southern end of Ranchito. The fire service showed up then too. We heard they had come because 'Gringos tend to get upset with fir, so showing up calmed them down.' Or something to that effect.

It was comical in a way, because Craig was thinking that he would be deported for causing such a large fire, but good luck prevailed and that one petered out as well. Come to think of it, both fires were in almost the same locations. Coincidence?

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