So, last night my home almost burned down.

What did burn down was the apartment building next door. My wife smelled smoke, I went outside to check, and omigod there were flames coming out of the windows.

We had to get out quickly, with just the clothes we were wearing.  I went back in to get my wallet and this computer.  (Nerdy?  It has my life work on it.  Also my writing career.)

We hung around on the street a bit watching and trying to judge if our building was going to catch the fire. If you’re wondering what this is like, it’s helpless and terrifying.  The fire seemed to get even worse– it was down to the second of three floors.  The fire department was there, we couldn’t even get near our building.  It was raining, but a huge fire is only mildly daunted by that. They put up a huge crane and poured water on the burning building.  From another vantage point we could see more hoses; sometimes they sprayed our building to keep it wet.

There was nothing to do but get to a hotel for the night, and stay up all night wondering if we’d lose everything we owned.

I went over in the morning; they were still pouring water on the big apartment building, but ours was standing.  The police were only letting people in one at a time, with an escort, so I went in to grab a couple of bags of essentials.  What do you grab when you may not be able to get at your apartment-full of possessions for an indefinite period?  Clothes, the cel phone (couldn’t find it last night), meds, wife’s credit cards, the monitor and keyboard so I could actually use the computer, something to read.

We drove to what was supposed to be a cheaper hotel, only it wasn’t.  My wife called her boss and asked to stay in his office basement.  He said that was OK, so we drove back there, unloaded, and I took a rest.  Then my landlord called with the little he knew, one bit of which was that we should rush over to the building and get anything we needed before they sealed it up for an unknown time.  So we got another load of stuff.

And now we’re somewhere else.  We’re staying with friends in town.  If it continues for awhile, my sister in in the area, though far from my wife’s work (and the health club).

The burned building is a horrific sight— it looks like something that got bombed.  The walls are brick, and the only thing visible is the brick walls, and not even all of those.  It’s still tall, and they’re worried it can collapse, which is why we can’t go back yet.  Plus, checking to make sure people were out, the firemen busted down all the doors.  So we don’t know how long we’ll be out of our apartment; I hope it’s a matter of weeks rather than months.

The fire was on the news; apparently there were no deaths, but there’s a lot of lives messed up today.

So, that’s why I won’t be playing League of Legends for awhile.