Here’s to the Hampshire Fire Brigade!

Well, I didn’t get to blog yesterday and nearly didn’t today. I’ll tell you, first yesterday was Harry’s birthday and I was sooo busy all day. I cannot lie, I really can’t and so yesterday was hard in that Harry calls from time to time to say hello and how’s your day etc. and I had to say I was thinking of doing some painting or well I had just sat down with a cuppa, neither of which were lies as such but what I didn’t say was that I was working furiously to getting a cake made, which took two hours to cook, and getting it cooled enough to marzipan and ice and decorate. I put the kitchen fan on it in the end! I was also blowing up balloons furiously… I stopped at 34 out of puff  and 28 short of the number I was aiming for. I placed banners on the table and down the bannisters and hung a huge bundle of ballons up, the rest I weighted and put on the table surrounding the cake which was still slightly warm when I iced it, along with various other little decorations. As well as the usual laundry and cooking dinner that is, anyway we lit the candles as he came through the back gate and showered him with balloons when he entered the dining room as we sang Happy Birthday… silly I know and I had to tell him just how hard it was not to tell him what I had been up to all day. I think he enjoyed it and at least it gave him something to talk about at work the next day.

No the Fire Brigade had nothing to do with the number of candles on the cake, I’ll come to that later. I have a problem from time to time with vertigo and today the reason behind me almost not getting to my blog was just that, vertigo… the worst I have ever had it. Harry came up with what could have caused it – blowing up his balloons would have put pressure on my ears. Anyway, a wobbly visit to the Gp and some antibiotics and it is beginning to settle down hopefully. The trouble was I was exhausted after a bad night and completely forgot I was expecting the fire brigade coming to check my smoke detectors etc. When the doorbell rang I leapt up from the chair, my book falling to the floor, and opened the door bleary eyed. It took a second for me to realise ah yes… that was why I had to tidy up, painstakingly slowly so I didn’t fall over, so that at least the house was tidyish this morning … I had visions of fire engines and firemen in their uniforms coming to call but although they were nice, all they wore were bloiler suits with a nice logo for the fire brigade on. I needed just one smoke detector and learnt a lot about my electrical apliances, especially the adaptors. Fortunately, I have always been safety conscious and I used the correct long bank adaptors. Anyone using the square plug in kind should throw them away , THEY ARE UNSAFE, instead by using the long banks of sockets you are protected by a fuse in the plug, usually another in the bank and the fused plugs on the appliances themselves. Thankfully, we were all ok. I also learned the importance of having a drill that everyone knows about and also the whereabouts of the keys to any visitors that stop over too. Little things but things that could save a life, so I thank the Hampshire Fire  Service for this free check and advice service and would like to say that if you would like a couple of firemen to call on you and run through your safety procedures and electrical socket use and provide free smoke detectors if you need them, do give them a call in your area. I believe all counties offer this service. It is free. Better safe than sorry and I found it extremely useful. You will be disappointed in not having a fire engine or uniformed guys but hey, we can’t have everything.

Talking of fires, I had a wonderful conversation with my daughter in Spain yesterday. Suzi called up to ask me to put a message on her facebook to the fact her internet was down and she would be back asap… ‘Why?’ asks I. ‘What’s the problem?’ ‘Oh apparently,’ says she, ‘ a helicopter hit the cables or something.’  ‘What about the helicopter, did it crash ?’ asks I, ‘ Oh the helicopter is ok, it was the bucket’ says Suz, ‘Bucket, what bucket?’ I am getting quite curious now. ‘ The bucket with the water in’ was the reply. Now Suzi isn’t blonde but she can sure come out with some wonderful blonde type stuff… ‘how did the bucket manage to do the damage? asks I, ‘It was under the helicopter.’  ‘So what was it doing under the helicopter?’ says me not thinking… ‘putting out the fire….’ I am beginning to panic now, fire! helicopter! buckets of water! I was wondering what was coming next and had visions of this story unfolding to become some disaster story happening to their house or something and relayed as if it was common place and I should know about it. Suz then realised that in the UK this sort of thing doesn’t happen often, well not round here anyway,  and gave me the whole picture. Apparently there was a forest fire in the mountain and the helicopters were carrying those huge containers of water to try and contain it…. Phew! How different our lives and experiences are and how easy it is to jump to conclusions… but then, bless her, she could have started the story with the forest fires instead of the helicopter and her cable to the internet…. Here’s a big Thank you to firefighters everywhere and the good work they do!

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