Photo Credit — AleXander Hirka / Used with permission

The Fire Next Door

When working from home becomes tricky

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For someone born just past the middle bit of the last century, I find myself managing this 21st-century work world with a certain amount of confidence that’s mostly bravado (just between us). So after a short lull while one of the bosses was traveling I wasn’t surprised by the sudden flurry of emails that hit my account late this afternoon. I wasn’t necessarily ready, but I wasn’t surprised.

What did surprise me was discovering that the building next door was on fire!

I was trying to concentrate and there was all this smashing of glass going on out back. WTF? I finally leaned out the window to see who was breaking what and noticed that heavy black smoke was pouring out of the windows of our neighboring building. There were firemen down on the ground floor destroying a lot of windows by the sounds of things and several more up on the fire escapes.

Within minutes enormous flames were blasting out of lower story windows reminding us mere mortals that fire is powerful and unpredictable. And in charge.

My partner, AleXander, sprang into action. He grabbed the cat carrier and told me to get the passports. Did I have a portable hard drive? Where was it? Get that. Get anything you think you’ll need if we have to evacuate. Do it now! The cat found this all very entertaining.

Photo Credit — AleXander Hirka / Used with permission

When we went out front, this is what we saw. Well, there was one bozo in that lit window — which is in the burning building, btw — who kept taking photos and watching the drama even as there was smoke coming from the window above him.

Some people.

The firemen helped an old man out of the building, found a chair for him, and went back to work. New York’s greatest super, our super, Lord Kent was there. The conglomerate which owns our building owns that one as well. Kent was on his phone. He’s going to have a very tough week or so even with porters to help.

We heard someone tell someone else that no one was hurt. I hope that’s true.

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