Fire, Fire, House on Fire

On Sunday it will be two weeks since our townhouse fire. I am convinced that this will mark our life so that everything will now be “before the fire,” or “after the fire.” Life is like that when big things happen, like before the baby was born, or after mom died, or before the earthquake. An irreversible wall of separation from an old life to a different life. 
So where are we now? Well, we are settling into our furnished interim condo (just across the street) and friends and neighbors have brought us groceries, meals, clothes, and donated generously to a fund set up for us by St. Peter’s in Lewes or given us cash, checks, Visa cards. We even got a donation to our Amazon account. All of which will help with the large expenses like insurance deductibles and small unexpected expenses like boxes of kleenex. We are amazed at everyone’s generosity and can’t thank them enough.
We have talked to three fire inspectors, three insurance adjustors, Amanda, our project manager from ServPro, who is overseeing the salvaging and demolition. We have moved our handicap ramps for the second time. We have had Verizon install our FIOS for the second time. We have filled out authorization forms for security deposits and started the process to repair our van which suffered some melted plastic areas. We have sifted through the debris to see what could be salvaged.
We are blessed that many items could be saved and will be cleaned and restored. Things like china, crystal, flatware, pots, pans, plates, and utensils. A dozen boxes of canned and sealed food are waiting to be put on our kitchen shelves. Some artwork was unharmed, and there are 15 items at an art restorer to see if they can be resurrected. Clothes not so much saved, but then we didn’t have a lot to begin with and in slower lower Delaware we don’t need a lot of fancy duds. Some of our electronics can be restored – we just got our 40-inch TV back, and we are hopeful “Alexa” will make it. Most of our furniture didn’t survive, but it was showing lots of wear anyway. Smoke is insideous and everywhere even where you didn’t think it could penetrate and is almost impossible to remove. Irreplaceable files and papers were saved but still haven’t found our birth certificates or Baptismal records.
We have also managed to do some “normal” things like open our mail, get haircuts, stop for ice cream, and do a bit of grocery shopping.  Next week “normal” will be paying some bills, lunch with a friend, and shopping for slacks for Ralph. We continue to feel blessed that we are alive and can still cuddle with our precious Loki to watch Jeopardy each evening. God is indeed good.

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