The second and last week of the holidays. I had a lot to do this morning.
Had to arrange an appointment for tomorrow with my gardener. Walk Trompie. Pack orders and get them ready to be posted.
Off I went about 10:30 am. Went to the Doggy parlour to make an appointment for Trompie’s groom. The lady was fully booked up until May 22. Lucky for me she made an exception to groom him on Saturday, May 5th.
Then to the post office.
At 11:30 am I entered Pack-and-Save to buy my week’s groceries. I was halfway through when the alarm went off inside the store.
I thought: “What now?”
I left my trolley while the alarm was still screaming. I had experienced a few alarms going off in South Africa.
Then came the command: “Evacuate the store!” Only once.
No rush nothing! Workers were all moving out to the door encouraging the public to do so too. I saw that some elderly people were helped to get outside.
We had to move out onto the parking lot in the front of the shop. After about 5 minutes the fire brigade arrived.
I waited behind some workers.
One of the workers came to me and asked if I was okay and explained that the fire brigade had to first declare the place save before we could move back inside.
It wasn’t a pleasant experience to hear the alarm and to move outside.
It was only a fire drill!
FIRE on THE HILL
On my way to the Afternoon After School Session yesterday, starting at 3 o’clock, there was a hustle and bustle of cars at the turnoff. A fire engine and firemen were busy with their water hoses extinguishing a fire at the bottom of the hill.
The hill before the fire. The home on the right was in the way of the flames.
I turned right, on my way to school. Arriving at school, there was chaos.
Children were shouting and running around. I looked at the hill and saw this huge fire burning on the slopes. Smoke billowed up. The wind blew the flames up the hill. There was no stop at all. One on top of the hill was in the way of the flames. We were terrified.
Two helicopters came with their water buckets. Every 5 minutes one opened and tried their best to put the fire out.
In the meantime, I took some of the children to the swimming pool. We could see how the helicopter’s emptied their bucket. It took them three hours to put it out.
Some of the younger children were very scared. They cried and thought the fire would reach us. Luckily here is a river and a road between the school and the hill.
State Highway was closed till after six that evening. Parents had to take a back road to get to the school. I also had to use the back road. There was a real traffic jam from Te Marua into Upper Hutt.
What a dangerous adventure!