Saturday, March 6, 2010

Report From Ladder Company 40 Day 167

Friday  (FINALLY!!!)

Hi Team!

I did it.  I survived to Friday.  I'm not sure how.  But I did drink three quarts of iced tea and juice today and I slept 7 hours.  YAY ME!  (I did not go meet Coach Alex to walk today so I have to take a two for three today.)  Instead, I met with a fellow Fire Buff Battalion member and our most recent wannabe (John) to go visit some fire stations.  John has been an unofficial buff for a long time and has taken a lot of pictures and posted them on various websites he has created.  Photographing fire apparatus is a hobby of his and he wants to be a firefighter some day.  He is kind of shy and so is Firekat, the member that went with us.  I claim to be the shy one but they put me to shame.

We went to station 15 first.  When we got there, Firekat told us to go ahead of her.  John starts to go to the back fo the fire station and I tell him to follow me, the front is over there (pointing).  He says to me,
"I never knock on door before" (he is Japanese with good but not perfect English) "I always stop when they are washing trucks."  This particular fire station is a converted house with a large bay built along side of it for the fire engine.  The windows on the bay door are so far up that none of us can tell if anyone is even in quarters.  I told him we'd have to knock because no one was out and proceeded to lead the way.  Being shy as I am, I signalled for him to go first when we got to the door.  He backed away quickly.  I looked at Firekat who very quickly said, "Don't look at me!"   AUUUUUGGGGHHHH!  Okay.  Babies!  I knocked on the door.  They both stepped back.  The door opened and I was holding a clear plastic box of home made chocolate chip cookies in front of me.  An older fireman looks down at us and says, "Nobody's home!  Go away!  (I am sure he has noticed my fire buff battalion patch on my sleeve of my coat and Firekat is wearing a fire buff battalion sweatshirt).  I said, "But we have home made cookies!"  He opened the door wide and looked at only me saying, COME ON IN!!!  Funny how cookies always seem to break the ice.  I introduced myself to him and the other two firefighters, who came to the door when they heard "cookies" and I introduced Firekat and John and explained why we were there.  They were so kind and obliging!  One of the guys pulled the engine out onto the apron and another one said, "Hey, it's kind of dirty from the last shift.  It's got a little mud on it, should we wash it?"  The officer nodded in the affirmative and the three of them began washing it.  I tried to make some small talk with one of the firefighters just so I could feel a little more comfortable.  John was kind of demanding, I thought, in his requests but I think it was a cultural thing in how he went about it.  I tried to throw in the pleases and thank you's and explain a little about what John was doing this for.  The guys were very obliging moving the engine into the best light, closing the bay doors, removing the helmet from the dash and out of the picture, etc.  They joked with us and were really very nice.  They quizzed John on CPR because he told them that one of the guys from the C shift had been his instructor.  I told them about my dream of becoming a paramedic and that I was starting school soon and hoped to be doing my ride-alongs with our fire department.  They were very encouraging.  Our visit got cut short when they got a call but they thanked us for  our interest and thanked Firekat and myself for our work with the Battalion telling us how much they really appreciated us working to take care of them.  Aw shucks!  They are way too kind.  I love firemen!

When we left 15's we went to 8's.  I had never been in 8's in their current building but always wanted to.  (Remember I grew up near 8's original station house).  At 8's John knew one of the firefighters.  She remembered him so that made things a little smoother.  They were happy to see cookies and were then willing to oblige us as well.  I told one of the guys I would  never show up to a fire station empty handed and he laughed.  We talked quite a bit while John was making requests and doing his thing with the camera.  This guy, whose name escapes me now doggonit, was around the old 8's when my brother was around there.  I was telling him that I grew up four houses to the south of the old 8's and he started asking me questions about when and exactly where.  He knew the exact house but he was there several years after I was gone from the area.  I told him about some of my brother's antics and he had heard all about him.  In fact he knew very well who my brother was!  My poor bro, his reputation preceeds him!  He is infamous.  I told the guy my brother grew up to be a good guy and a father of six and a fireman.  He was quite impressed.  He almost choked when I said they all lived in a fire station and of course I had to explain.  He thought that was really cool and said so.   I told him my brother was pretty embarrassed about his legendary past but he blew it off.  He said we all do things when we're kids and then we grow up. Then he started telling me about his kids.  It was really fun talking with him.   Later he asked me what I did and I told him what I currently do and about school and my dreams.  I even admitted that I grew up secretly wanting to be Roy DeSoto, to which he laughed again.  I told him that I knew it was likely too late to become a career fire department paramedic but that I was going to do my best and see where it took me.  He asked why I thought it was too late and I told him about an email I got from a new fire chief back east that I had contacted.  (She just became the first full time female fire chief in her state!) She told me that if I was looking at a paid gig, civil service, then 41 was too old to get started but that if I was interested in a volunteer department to go apply.  This firefighter said that was not true.  He added that it might be where she's from but that our town did not have a cut off for civil service.  He told me of a man who was 51 when he was hired on as a rookie just a few years ago.  He told me to not give up and to go for it!  Forget could nine, I'm now on could 57!  I LOVE FIREMEN!  (Did I mention that already?)

Shortly after that Engine 10 pulled up to station 8 and the Lt. of 8's went to the engine to talk to the crew.  After about five minutes, Firekat and I were talking to each other waiting for John to finish up his pictures and Engine 10's crew was ready to leave.  We didn't know it though.  Before they pulled out they turned on every loud noisemaker they could and Firekat screamed a little and we both jumped out of our skin!  I may have screamed a little too, I don't know because I was watching Firekat and hearing her scream!  After Engine 10 was a half a block away they turned off their siren.  So I guess they did it on purpose!  GOOD one guys!  You GOT us!!!  It's nice to be loved!

When we left 8's we tried to deliver cookies at 7's but they were not home and we waited until John had to leave for work.  We dropped John off at his car and drove back to 7's to wait for them.  After a while though, we gave up and decided to go to 10's.  I'm sure they would have gotten a kick out of it if they had been home but they were out too so we tried 11's, which was on my way home.  They too were out.  Busy day I guess for the local FD.  I can't give away the last dozen cookies.  Oh well.  My staff are looking foward to them.

Yesterday, I told my staff I would be visting fire stations today and that  I had to bake cookies when I got home last night.  One of them said, "Sure, she makes cookies for the firefighters but she forgets all about us!"  I said if they called me Chief I would bring my crew cookies!  When I got there I found my teacher and called her Captain.  I gave her cookies.  My assistant was the Leiutenant and our substitute assistant was the boot.  (he asked if he could at least be the helmet! LOL  I had to explain what boot meant.)  They didn't seem to mind.  They like cookies as much as firemen do.

Today at work I was so tired that I couldn't even write an incident report without sleeping.  Seriously, my eyes were open but I had no control over what I did.  I was writing a report about a child's unsafe behavior.  It started out fine.  "Joe's" behavior was unnaceptable when he continuously tried to leave the play area today.  There was a stranger on the playground who had balloons and he kept trying to talk to this person even after he was talked to several times about it.  Ms. "McGillicutty" attempted to discuss the......   (you won't believe what I wrote next) "beholden monkey stealth."  Suddenly, after I wrote it my brain started to re-engage and I thought to myself, "What did I just write?"  Then I looked.

"...attempted to discuss the beholden monkey stealth."

What in the WORLD???????
Where did THAT come from????  What does it even mean?

Oh my gosh I am SO tired!!!

Okay, not only am I so tired, I am certifiably insane.  On that note...

Stay safe.

Hotflash out.

Report From Ladder Company 40 Days 165 and 166

Hi Team!


Well, I did not meet with Coach Alex today because I had an early release day at work, meaning I had to come in early to greet kids that got out early.  In addition, I had a meeting with the Fire Buff Battalion during the shorter split.  Today I received my set up for my car to be used as Canteen 6.  I got two magnetic signs, gatorade, water, and cookies.  I just need an ice chest now.  (pictures coming in a future post)

I did well on fluids today.  3 quarts!  YAY me.  I did not go exercise but was again very active at work, especially since I had an extra two hours and extra children.  I slept about 7 hours so that makes me three for three.  I'm still really tired though.  It is hard to catch up on missing sleep.


Good gracious me, I am TIRED!!!!!!!!!!  I am a walking Zombie, officially!  I drank two quarts today, barely.   I was as active as I usually am on a non scheduled exercise day.  But I can only claim 2 for three because last night I did not sleep.  It wasn't my fault but as tired as I have been this week already, I'm not gonna try to defend it.  I'm just too beat.  Here's what happened:

It seems my dog got into the garbage this morning, where she found about 2 1/2 pounds of chocolate. It had been mixed with Craisins and was a great snack, until the craisins crystallized (well the sugar in them did anyway) and left a texture that was less than desirable (apparently) to my son and husband. My son threw them away.

Although my dog is not perfect, Kaylee has always been pretty well behaved even without formal training. However, lately she has decided to knock over recycle bins and the garbage can every time she is left home alone. Usually we put the trash can in the bathtub to prevent this. Unfortunately, my son forgot to put it back after his shower. When I came home after my morning shift the can was knocked over and there was garbage strewn about. I cleaned it up after scolding Kaylee and didn't think about it again. I did not know that it HAD been full of chocolate.

When I came home from my morning shift, Kaylee seemed a bit more "clingy" for lack of a better way of describing it. She wanted lots of cuddles and attention. Okay, so I figured she was lonely. No big deal, I took a nap because I was exhausted from the night before and Kaylee cuddled up to me and napped too.

That night after dinner and after everyone else had gone to bed, I was starting on writing my blog. (I did not finish it due to the next event but I saved it and finished it later.) As I was writing, suddenly I heard Kaylee start to wretch. Oh no! I turned to look at her and she threw up chocolate puke all over my carpet. I ran to get something to clean it up and before I got back and cleaned it, she had done it three more times in different places. (Sorry to gross anyone out!) I cleaned up several messes and called my husband out of the bedroom to give me a hand. Kaylee went and drank a bunch of water then tried to settle on the couch next to me while I petted her and tried to comfort her. By this time I had figured out she had eaten chocolate because it looked and smelled (sorry) like chocolate. But I had no idea where she got it or how much she ate. After about an hour of this happening over and over and after a lot of prayer, she seemed to settle down and want to sleep. I let her curl up in my lap in the recliner chair and we started to go to sleep. Shortly after the light was off she did it again. All over my top blanket. In order to contain it and to try and keep my second blanket from getting yucky, I wrapped her up in the top one. Of course, this covered her in the mess. I hollered for my husband because I could not let go of the dog to un-recline the chair and I couldn't get up with it reclined. He came and took the bundle from me and started her bath. I got the laundry started. This cycle of puking, drinking water and trying to sleep lasted all night. My husband took over her care at 11:45 because he knew I had been up the entire night before due to the fire. ( I LOVE my  husband!!)

I am happy to report that at about 4:00 Kaylee stopped puking and she has been fine ever since. Thank God!! I really thought she was a goner this time. I would have been SO sad. I love that little brat. (get it? She's a weiner dog! hee hee)  -sorry

Sorry this  has been posted so long after the time it should have been.  I had it almost finished in draft form but not posted because I kept falling asleep at the keyboard before I could finish and post it.  Now I'm playing catch up!

Stay safe!

Hotflash out.