Sunday, January 22, 2012

A Lobster I Can Fight, A Fire I Cannot Part II

You might remember in July 2010 the condo building next door to the one I live in suffered a devastating fire, and to this day occupants are finally just moving back home. If I thought (as I did then) that was too close for comfort imagine my heartbreak when I heard a young woman crying outside my window minutes before my alarm clock chimed for me to get ready for work the other night.

Then I heard the sirens followed by "What's on fire?"

Off went the covers, on went the work clothes (though I WAS in violation of dress code as since I would likely be evacuated I was going to save an X-Men shirt or two), grabbed my SD cards, cooler and work bag and a pair of special model train locomotives before the FD was pounding on my door.

So it was happening again, but now in my own building.

It was surrealistic being inside a burning building checking all of cats's hiding spaces to evacuate them, staying just ahead of the fire which clawed its way through a neighbor's kitchen soffet. By the Lord's grace I was making it out of my bedroom with the last cat when thin white/gray smoke began filling my hallway. Time was up, no saving the bishoujo, photos, trains or music beyond the mp3 player I tossed in my bag.

"I'm out, I'm out!" I yelled to the fire department awaiting me and the cats, as I bled from the scratches the neurotic Himalayan gave me on face, neck and hands.

Once I'd booked off of work and called my family to assure them I was okay I mentally checked off what meant the most to me to salvage after this disaster.

Fortunately, not all was lost. In fact, five hours after the 911 call myself and six other units were cleared for occupancy -- the blaze confined to the originating unit and the one above. Vent holes had been cut into the building, but it was spared significant water damage due to the fire being caught so quickly.

Of course, my place smells like I sat around the campfire, but I'm so lucky that's all. There's no visible smoke damage and no water damage from the fire. (And so soon after replacing that comics run, phew).

I'm concerned though, as I had the water heater flood in December and the fire scare the other night; I fear there'll be a plague of locusts in February! (Just kidding)

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Rebuilding the Archives

The Communications Dept partook in a Secret Santa exchange this past Holiday Season. Even at work, people know I like superheroes and my Secret Santa gifted me with a gift certificate to one of the many comic shops located in the region where I live.
Uncanny 354 Variant
Naturally, on one of my days off I took advantage of the gift certificate to fill in the holes of my X-Men collection; to replace what I sold when I was married, thinking that part of me was past (and it was at the time, but it's come back). I'm happy to say I've completed the run I originally had of Uncanny X-Men when I first started collecting the title with #319 (and originally stopping around #397 or so). Now more than eight years since I last had these issues, and one year since I started grabbing up back issues again, I have back what I first had in one of the titles (only a dozen or so more to rebuild!)