Sunday, November 7, 2010

Fire! This exit blocked!

     I sit here today, still surprised by the events of the day.  It began like any other since we've been here on the beautiful island of Gili Trawangan.  We've come to know the locals and have made a few friends, especially at the bungalows that have become our home these past few days.  Turtle bungalows is a sanctuary that raises and releases turtles and we've(I've) even named a few.
     We spent the morning in the ocean for an early swim and had a

wonderful breakfast on our front deck.  I spent a few hours writing and we decided to have lunch at our bungalows as they had been gearing up to open a burger bar all week.  We ordered a couple Bintang beers, a steak burger for Gary and a veggie for me.  As we sat at the bar sipping, I noticed a small grease flare up in the kitchen. I pointed it out to Elan and assumed he would walk over and put a lid on it; which is the appropriate action for such an instance.  We were not prepared for what happened next.
     Before I could utter another word, he panicked and grabbed an already full pitcher of water and tossed it on the flames.  I jumped up and screamed, "No water, no water on that fire,"  as I ran to get help. Gary was helping hook up the small, rubber hose and I ran into the kitchen to find a lid for the pan. One of the guys that worked there had followed me in and removed the pan from the stove.  I found myself back in a corner of the kitchen with no way out.  I looked up and saw the roof above me was completely engulfed in flames and was falling in on me.  We stared at each other for a moment, seemed like an eternity.  Part of the roof (dry palm fronds) floated down and brushed my arm. Thankfully, he put the pan on the floor and I heard Gary yell, "Get out of there, we've gotta pack our things and get the hell out of here. It's all gonna go!"  We ran as fast as we could, throwing everything into our packs as quickly as was humanly possible.  We dropped our stuff in the middle of the yard and went back to help fight the fire that was now in the framework of the building.  Flames and choking smoke billowed for miles as neighbours from every corner of the island answered the call for help.
     A chain was formed and we filled buckets of water and passed them up to the brave men risking their lives to get the fire under control. One of them was my husband and I'm so proud to say, he did not hesitate to risk himself to help.  Everyone did what they could to get it under control and make sure that all of the people that were staying there were safe.  Without the aid of a fire department, which does not exist on this small island, the fire was contained without casualties.
      I sit here grateful for life and thankful I had the sense to marry such an amazing man.  We moved in to our new room, since ours was next to the fire and had a beer.  We talked about the events of the day and were still riding the adrenaline high.  We looked up and found a scorpion inside our room. I grabbed a broom and swept him outside. Ha! I laugh in the face of danger! What else you got? :)


  1. Wow! I'm so glad you both are okay. You'll have to add this to the next book. . .

  2. Dear Toshi,
    Bravo for your website...
    It is just Wonderful!
    So glad you are OK...
    A lot of love.