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A warm affection is felt for the firemen who brought people from the local care homes to the November Remembrance Service at the local War Memorial

Fire image for Maureen's musing

When the Firemen so kindly took people from the local care homes to the November Remembrance Service, Doreen was reminded of her own personal encounter with the heroes when she was a much younger wife and mother.

She and her husband, John had not had an evening out alone together for many years. When the eldest child was old enough to baby-sit the others, off they went with a wonderful sense of freedom, for two hours on a bright Summer evening.

It was still light as they strolled back. Turning the corner into their road they saw a dramatic scene. A Fire-engine! And yes, it was parked outside their own house!!

The Firemen greeted them reassuringly, praising the children who had done everything right.

After the departure of the Heroes and dispersion of interested neighbours, they heard the full story from the children, who thought it all a huge adventure.

The only damage, apart from muddy footprints, was to the fence and garden-shed. The blaze had been caused by a smouldering mattress which the man-next-door had thrown from his bedroom window after his smoking in bed had set it alight. The mattress, seemingly inert, had lurked with sinister intent against the dividing fence, biding its time until the parents had left for their long-awaited historic jaunt, abandoning their innocent children.

The first time out for years turned out to be also the last time out for many more years to come!!

Whenever the irony of life was discussed, Doreen and John had an unbeatable anecdote to relate.

Doreen, looking around from among the crowd around the War Memorial, felt a warm affection for the Firemen who had brought her there, who all those years ago had been on hand to protect and inspire her children, and were now facilitating her and her senior friends with their customary strength and good humour.

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