After my boxing lesson today, I found out that work was canceled because the University closed classes. Because we're having a blizzard. Hurrah! On the bus home, I spent a good twenty minutes worrying about my hungry student, who has a paper due Thursday, and the stapler kid, because he has a revision due tomorrow morning and was freaking out again last I heard.
As soon as I stepped inside, all my work troubles melted away because the neighbors banged on the door and told me to look out the window. There, on the little rooflet between my apartment and theirs, was a smoking, sparking live wire. Hurrah! They called our landlord's emergency number and I got to work dialing 911. This was my first emergency call. And I didn't even have time to practice.
I worked very hard to describe the situation without exaggerating. I said that a large area of snow was melted around the obviously hot wire, which was split, sputtering, smelled bad, and streamed black smoke into the snowy air. My calm facade was shot to dust when a spark zapped my hand on the window ledge and I started freaking out. The firemen were here in under 5 minutes! Hurrah!
These firemen were really friendly and hot. They were all young and spent a very long time banging snow off their boots before coming into the apartment. They even threw some snowballs at each other on the unshoveled and unsalted porch. They pretty quickly controlled the live wire, turned off the electricity to the kitchen and office, and gave the building owner (who arrived on the scene just in time) a tongue lashing for leaving an exposed wire on a rooftop running between two apartments.
Who knew there would be a better way to provide power to two apartments at once? I would have just run a string through the windows and put a tin-can on each end. Or is that for providing phone service? Anyway, the landlord promises to have an electrician come and fix the wire, maybe even wrap it up in some duct tape.
My firemen friends lingered in the kitchen a bit, complimented my pink Kitchenaid, and told me they were reluctant to return to shoveling snow, which was their task before we called to save their day. I think they were a little sad to leave when they saw the case of Yuengling by the radiator. I felt like inviting them to stay and hang out for the afternoon geyser show.