A rubbish fire

7 11 2007

Saturday I almost set Tamale alight. I came close to being the first VSO volunteer to have burnt his lodgings to the ground. I could have reached that exulted position of being mentioned in the pre-departure safety briefing (when VSO list some of the stupid things volunteers have done to get themselves injured, I’m not sure whether for warning or amusement).

One of the services which I took for granted in the UK but is missing here is garbage collection.  Any rubbish I generate I have to dispose of and, as I’ve mentioned in previous posts, fire is the approved method of disposal.  So Saturday morning I duly took my black plastic bag containing food and other waste out of my kitchen, where it had been nicely fermenting over the week in the heat, out to the garden and gathered fuel. In an attempt to preserve energy I have a pile of wood (mostly bark from an expiring palm tree I have lying prone in my garden) and I piled material from this over the afore mentioned black plastic bag.  In a short while the ephemeral orange dancers had consumed the offering I had made and returned to the ether from whence they came leaving only ash. Oh, and a few tin cans.

Having responsibly supervised this combustion I returned in doors to read a book very kindly given me by a VSO colleague here, Steve.  As I was enjoying the bliss which is a good book a pungent white smoke started to blow through the house.  Muttering to myself about neighbours who were less responsible than their fires than me, I decided to investigate. To my horror (and probably not your surprise) my nice pile of firewood was now a nice fire, and threatening to spread to the drying cut grass and vegetation that is my garden.  Springing into action I nobly sacrificed a whole half bucket of precious water in an attempt to stop the conflagration.  And this was despite there being no water flowing to my house. My sterling efforts as a fireman prevailed and the blaze was soon under control, leaving me musing as to what would have happened had I not decided to read, but gone out instead.




3 responses

13 11 2007
Mark Harrison

I don’t suppose you happened to be anywhere near Stratford, London on Monday 12th November did you?

19 11 2008
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