Saturday, June 26, 2010

A Strange Thing

There must be an angel watching over my house...

Last night at about 8:45 pm we were out having dinner to celebrate my husband's last day of work (he retired!) when the strangest thing happened.
Our friend was called away to a telephone call, came back to the table after a few moments and said, "There's no easy way to say this but your house is on fire".


Funny how timing is; they had just brought back the receipt from paying the bill so there was no momentary thinking of who would take care of what, we just got up and ran out the door.
We still couldn't believe it - our house couldn't be on fire - I had just been home two hours before and everything was fine... but then all the "Did I turn anything on when I was home" started. I had been home for an hour after work, watering the gardens and getting ready, letting the cats in and feeding them. That was when my heart truly sank - I started to shake and said "The cats are in".
All the way up the hill we were searching for smoke; if our house was on fire, surely we would see smoke, but there was none, at least none that we could see.
Salmon Arm is a small town and we were home within five minutes to a block full of fire engines, ambulances, police cars, scores of people and house that looked fairly intact, except for a steady stream of firefighters going in and out the front door and at least 8 on the roof.
The very first thing was a rush of neighbors surrounding us and all reaching out and patting and hugging us and all saying the same thing "The cats are out, S-- (our best neighbour) got them out." 
And then we breathed. Bozzy and Mistress Josephine (she's a girl cat, he's a boy, she has ears, he doesn't) were safe - ran away from the yard because of the commotion but holed up somewhere until things quietened down. Funny thing was, when I went in from the garden I didn't bother to lock the back door. So S-- and another neighbour were able to walk right in and get the cats, and unlock the front door for the firemen so they didn't have to axe it when they arrived.

The rest of the story is pretty simple: a fan in the attic above our bedroom closet caught fire and set the attic on fire. Our neighbours (it seems many of them!) saw the smoke and flames coming from vents in the gable-ends and not only called the fire department, but rescued our cats. We have a 36 square foot view out our roof now, almost no smoke damage, very little water damage, a great pile of clothes that need to be cleaned and a wood floor that may be in need of refinishing - best you can get if you have a house fire!

And my "Workroom"? Well, it was across the hall from the fire and seems to be spared from any of it, save a lingering smell of smoke.
Cats and quilts, all safe and sound...
How lucky can you get?


Laura said...

S & B are gonna get the biggest, butteriest, batch of cookies ever known to man when I get home!!!

Tiffany said...

Wow, I am so happy that everything and everyone are ok!! What a scary thing! So glad all of your precious things in life are good!

Lucille said...

I am so glad that every thing is all right. Thinking of you.

Becca said...

OMG Jillayne! I had goosebumps and tears in my eyes as I was reading this! I am so glad your family, and cats are safe. I would absolutely be sick if I lost my 2 cats! I'm so so happy that it worked out the way it did. You and your family are truly blessed. I'll be thinking of you and saying a little prayer of "thanks."

Tina Eudora said...

Oh Jillayne, my worst nightmare with my 12 rescue cats! I am so happy for you that it turned out the way it did, you must be so relieved. And how wonderful of your neighbors to have thought about and risked their safety to save your little guys. You are a very blessed lady today!!!My prayers are with you!
Tina xo

Ginger said...

You DO have guardian angels. I am so sorry you had to go through that but the outcome was wonderful. Your neighbors are TRUE neighbors and friends. Love your blog, thanks for stopping by.

Anonymous said...

Jillayne, thank goodness you are ALL ok and this didn't happen in the middle of the night when you were sleeping. It could have had a different outcome. What a blessing you have such good neighbors and that help came so quickly.
I hope all is well today! No more surprises!

Saltbox Treasures said...

Glad your fire was caught early and the cats are safe. Thanks for visiting my blog. Love Bozzy's bed!
~ Julie

Maggie said...

I am so glad you and your family and cats are safe.......thank God that the neighbours saw it and it was during the day.....I will be thinking about you.

Sandy Michelle said...

Shoot that is scary but thankfully you had great neighbours who saved the cats! You have angels indeed! Thanks for visiting my blog with such sweet comments :)

Sandy xox

marie said...

I'm so glad to hear that your fire had the best possible ending. What a blessing to have such wonderful neighbors.

Jackie Higgs said...

Jill just heard the story of your home and your two cats, what a miracle that everything worked out the way it did, you are blessed to have such wonderful neighbours and friends,things do not always make sense but good things usually come out of not so good situations , I hope all will be back to normal soon for you and Mark and your 2 special cats..
Sending you love and light, Jackie

Debora said...

Jillayne, I am so glad to hear that there wasn't more damage and that your cats are safe and sound. Whew! Many blessings to you as you clean up.