Hot Time in the Old Town – Celebrating Fire Fighters
There are so many good people who grow goodness in our world. Today I’m celebrating fire fighters. The folks who really understand what it feels like to be part of a “hot time in the old town tonight.” The story goes that Theodore Metz, who wrote the rousing ragtime tune in 1896, was on the road with his band when a band member saw some kids start a fire. It was burning down the building – thus the words about there being a hot time in that town tonight.
In reality, that meant property was ruined, and people were in danger. That’s the glory of firefighters – who do such good work to help protect life and property. I’m grateful for them.
When I think of 9/11, I think of fire fighters and police officers [whom I’ll celebrate another time soon] heading into the Twin Towers when everyone else was fighting to get out alive. So many images brought tears to my eyes and moved me in my soul. Brave people. Caring ones. Good ones.
With the unrelenting wild fires that sometimes engulf parts of the west, I think of those firefighters.
Once, years ago, we were in one of the last cars out of Yellowstone National Park when a huge fire was burning out of control. We saw the helicopters fly in, dumping chemicals. We could smell the strong, burning odor that stung the nose and see that thick white curtains of smoke that made it hard to breathe. We left. They stayed.
They don’t make a lot of money, usually. Like other public servants who lay their life on the line to help in times of emergency or chaotic, harmful situations, they should. Each time that alarm goes off, and they hop on a truck, they don’t know if they’re coming back. That’s scary. And they are amazing.
Such an important, beautiful job they offer. I imagine they feel the pain – intensely- when they lose someone to the fire’s grasp. I imagine they’re angry when, yet again, an arsonist creates the next blaze that takes property and even life.
On they go. An army of souls willing to do their part to help the communities in which they live. Or, to head out to an area where more willing hands and good hearts – and their expertise – are needed. That’s good stuff.
And goodness matters.