We Didn’t Start the Fire

With so many things going on this week, its hard to choose what to write about. From having the amazing anthropological experience of going through all of the antique stuff that was lying around in the old country store, to all of the cool feats of landscaping that some of the guys and I accomplished down at the river project site, to all of the dancing last night at the hootenanny, it was a pretty eventful week. But the one thing that really got my blood pumping was the fire-house experience that Jack and I just had. We’d been obsessing over firefighters for weeks now, after having started watching Chicago Fire on his computer (although we never let the guys down at the station know this was the impetus and origin of our visit), and now our conversations actually came to fruition. Jack had arranged with Charlene, one of the ladies that works at the organization we are volunteering with this week, for us to have a personal tour of the local volunteer firehouse. So today Charlene drove us down there, and we were greeted by five of the firefighters who apparently came down to the station today just to show us around. We got a tour of the facilities, an explanation of what all of the trucks did and what their job was like, and even a talk about the process for becoming a volunteer firefighter. It blew my mind actually being there and getting a firsthand account of what it was actually like to be a firefighter, not just how it appears on TV. This experience culminated with the firefighters giving us a ride back to our residence in the firetruck, and blowing the horn and blaring the sirens once we pulled up in front of it. The rush and feeling of elation when our cohorts came out front and saw us getting out of the truck with the sirens on is one of my favorite memories from this trip. The second lieutenant also gave us his phone number in case we had any more questions, and decals that we can put onto shirts with the Mullens County Fire Department logo on them. I can’t wait to have my mom sew it on for me!

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