Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Don't panic, don't panic.

We normally chuck our hot ashes in the canal (I know, I know but I don't care) but whilst Pickles was being blacked (by me) in the boat yard I decided that it would be better to place them in the hedge as we were on a trolley and I didn't think they would appreciate it if the ashes went into the basin.

Pleasant weather

I placed them into the metal coal bucket and onto the counter, ready for disposal when they had cooled. Several hours later I chucked them in the hedge next to the canal (don't get ahead of me here but I know that you know what's coming next). About an hour later, I (for some inexplicable reason) opened the side hatch to peer out. I (as you will already have surmised) was aghast at what confronted me. The hedge was alight with flames ten foot high and burning out of control. Stunned for a millisecond I realised that I was responsible for this inferno. This was not particularly good.

It's amazing what goes through your head in that short time you have to make instant decisions. Imagining standing in my blackened underpants, surrounded by hose baring firemen, head bowed in shame with the world in cinders around me.
Nearly finished
I grabbed the coal bucket and sprinted through the boat (Lisa was asleep on the sitee throughout all of this. I don't like to bother her with trivialities) full coal bucket in hand. Onto the counter, down the rickety ladder (I did mention that we're on a trolley, on a hard standing in a boatyard, didn't I?) around the back of the boat, flop flops, underpants and tee shirt, empty coal bucket contents on grass, fill bucket from basin, sprint (flip flop) across to said inferno and pour a pityful half bucket load contents onto the fire.

Nope, no good, it's still licking around the undergrowth and tearing up the nearest tree. This may not be a good idea and plan 'A' may need to be altered somewhat. Sprint (flip flop) back the the basin and fill said bucket (this time to the top) and back to the flames, (throw it at the base of the fire you fool) and empty bucket. Still no effect. This is not looking good. I may in fact require that elusive plan 'B'.
What's cooking?
Then a light bulb lit just above the cranium. The tap and hose that I had been using just that very morning was situated not ten meters from said blaze and the hose was still attached. Fortunately the hose was eleven meters long and after unreeling, extending, turning on and aiming the hose at (the base of) the fire we were up and running (flip flopping). Still clothed in my relaxed attire, I aimed a considerable amount of water at the flames and after fifteen minutes of releasing steam, smoke, more flames, burning embers and much hissing, we seemed to be at the stage of what the fire brigade euphemistically call, damping down.

I had assumed with the amount of light and smoke produced by the initial blaze, that it would have been seen by many others, but seemingly not. No one approached, screamed, tutted, folded their arms, gazed in awe, ran around waving their arms in the air or even seemingly, noticed.
Half way pressure washed (I think these are all out of sequence)
So there you go. Ten o'clock at night, me standing in my less than modest attire, flip flopped feet, black and muddy, hose pipe in hand after fighting a blazing inferno looking slightly shell shocked and no one had even noticed. Well if nobody says anything, we can probably get away with this. Lets hide the evidence. Place cut reeds on top of the burnt area, take the burnt branches from the tree, hide all evidence. Lets hope it works. And it did. Next day no one said anything. Nobody had noticed. I got away with setting fire to the world.

A salutary tale. Lets be careful out there. Unfortunately no original photos. I was a tad busy after all.

Twisted firestarter.


Halfie said...

Er ... gosh!

If you're trying to keep it secret I'm not sure you're going about it the best way, Pete. Still, there are parts of the world where computers are a bit thin on the ground.

On my blog I have an "oops" label where I tag little things which go wrong. I think I'd mark this "OOPS".

Pete said...

Nobody reads this rubbish, do they?

This is deepest Leicestershire. No one has a 'puter here.

It most certainly was an oops.

Dave and Ann-Marie. said...

Since we set fire to a fair sized chunk of Oxfordshire doing exactly the same thing, we've noticed several blackened patches of hedge along the towpath. You're not alone.

Unknown said...

Very funny. Tears running down my face with laughter. Even the misses paused Emmerdale to see what I was laughing at!