The church I attend had a neat little event for the past 3 days, called “Love Smokes”. Sounds dubious, but it was just an event following a series of planned community events this summer. Last month was “Love Cooks”, where volunteers helped serve lunch to teachers at a Deerfield high school. So “Love Smokes” was where people signed up to serve the firemen and policemen in the Deerfield area.
There were 3 different teams helping out each day, and each team was divided again into 2 teams – the prep team and the service team. The prep team helped prep the food for cooking, or actually cooked some of the food, while the service team grilled the sausages and served the firemen and policemen who came. I was on the service team, which I think was the much easier team to be on because we basically put the food into trays and put out plates, forks and knives while the firemen/policemen served themselves. Plus we got all the ‘thank you’s and showers of appreciation too, while the poor prep team leave before they even see the shadow of a fireman/policeman. Oh well. I’m sure the thanks and praise get filtered through via osmosis somehow.
While serving, we also got to hear a few fascinating stories from a policeman’s point of view. For example, the police once received a call from a woman saying that the tornado warning was in effect but she didn’t know what to do. The police told her to stay away from the windows and go into the basement and take shelter there until the tornado passed, to which she replied, But that means I’ll have to leave my children upstairs!” The police then explained that no, she should take her children with her, but then she didn’t want to because she’d just put them to bed and didn’t want to wake them up. Yeaah, sure lady, because letting them sleep is SO much better than keeping them safe.
The same policeman told of another time when a lady called about a ‘frog infestation’. Turned out that her children had brought 3 frogs into the house for fun, and she’d called 911 so the police could catch the frogs and put them outside. I suppose that would count as an ’emergency’ for a person with a frog phobia.
Another thing I discovered was that no, firemen do NOT rescue cats from trees. They’d just tell the person to leave it alone for a while, and it would come down by itself. Another interesting fact was that women can become firefighters too, and there was one in the Deerfield fire station before but she left. Perhaps she couldn’t handle the heat (pun intended). And when firemen get bored, they start playing Bulls-Eye Washers until the next (real) emergency call comes through. What a life – saving the world for 48 hours, then going home to rest for 24 hours.
Later on in the day, after we’d served the firemen and policemen, I went to Bed Bath and Beyond to get some stuff and ran into one of the firemen we served. I gave him 2 of my Bed Bath coupons, and later on decided that while firemen and policemen help save others’ lives, I help people save money. Ha! So we do have something in common after all.