A few years ago he kids and I celebrated Thanksgiving at the fire station today along with a few other fire families. It was a small crowd. One other family with kids, several girlfriends, and the parents of one firefighter.
Dinner got off to a predictably late start since the two engine crews were still running calls, but we always expect that. What nobody could anticipate though, is the transmission on the medic engine failing about 150 yards away from the station on the way to a medical aid. So that meant limping the engine back to the station, and going to pick up another engine.
The food was great, as usual, and the crew that cooked was very considerate in trying to accommodate my dietary quirks. Since I don’t eat meat they left the sausage out of some stuffing. Of course they didn’t even realize that by using chicken broth in it they were negating their efforts. 🙂
During dinner there was the requisite walk-in medical aid, and then all hell broke loose in the city and then both engines were out on calls at the same time. (Predictably, just about the time most families in town are finishing up their own dinners.)
While I sat in the corner reading my book (I always go the these things prepared.) and watching the kids play video games I listened to the seasonal firefighter’s girlfriends sit at the table and talk about getting used to “this crazy schedule.” I couldn’t help but giggle quietly. I felt a little like an old military veteran listening to the new recruits. “I panic every time his Mom calls me while he’s on a fire.” “He never wants to do anything after he gets off his shift.” “I worry the minute he leaves for work.”
Welcome to the fire service, girls. Either get used to it FAST, or don’t marry him! It’ s not going to get any better, either. There were no “big fires” to speak of this year, so no long fire assignments. Every year is different and you can never predict it. You have to learn to roll with it. Or not.