A long time ago, Peter wrote this words, "Dear friends, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that has come on you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you." It never occured to me the several times i have read this, that it would ever actually come in the form of fire.
I was filling the canisters for the stove fuel and it over filled. When lit it exploded. It had happened before. We kept two small kitchen extinquishers in the bread hammock, and we had two large containers on board. I opted out for throwing our everblades blanket on top of the stove. I was perplexed the fire suddenly got bigger, the hatch was closed, and i did not want to open it to give the flames more 02, so i reached for the small extinquisher and put out the fire on the stove, but again, i was surprized our starboard port light curtain burst into flames. I felt the heat of the flames in my nostril. The only thought going through my head was, "There is no way, I am going to let my house burn down to the water!" I threw open the hatch, to run up the dock to get the hose and then I saw the fuel container, uncapped, on it's side, spilling it's liquid all over the countertop.
Running out on the dock, I saw, heard and smelled at the same time the hair on my head curling up in tiny black balls. Realizing I was on fire, I contemplated jumping in the canal, but the water hose was two seconds away. On goes the water spout, I doused myself, running back to the boat. I threw water everywhere. The flames were gone, but the smoke kept pouring out the hatch....I couldn't stop. I was out of breath, unable to call David, the neighbors looking over the fence asked me if I wanted them to call the fire department. Looking down at my left arm and seeing the skin falling off before my eyes I breathlessly yelled, "NO, call an ambulance!"
We have stayed too long at the dock, knowing this, but excusing this as the many land responsibilities and hobbies David and I knowingly take in our lives, I became complacent. I couldn't remember that word, David to my agreement was able to come up with a 4 syllable word to describe the most important ingredient for trouble; complacancy.
I found out in about 5 minutes an equation ringed true: Fire + complacency + split fuel + exploding butane = trouble + pain and fiery trial. That came with about $3,000 worth of electronic equipment.
In the middle of my captains course I was watching a lengthy film about prevention of fires aboard a vessel, I wondered through out, who would ever want to be a captain!? The Captain of my home, and heart has a few pet peeves, but one single command is sticking in my mind during these moments of contemplation. Those words are, "Gear Adrift!"
We hit a brick wall, we are recovering. The healing outpouring of love came from all over, family, and friends. Pain turned into experience. The goodness ripples