(Click on the photo to see it bigger.)
Well, here's something.
Last night my husband comes in from running an errand and says, "there's a fire on 12." Now, the 12th floor is where our "wacky" neighbor lives; just last November, this guy inexplicably turned all the faucets on in his apartment and flooded the whole building, putting the elevators out of commission. The woman two floors down from him still has a mold and mildew smell in her apartment from it.
Anyhoo, we go to the window, and sure enough, there is a gathering crowd of people, looking up with worried faces and pointing frantically to the black smoke that was now pouring out of his windows. The wacky neighbor was out there too, crying and looking dazed. The fire trucks arrived within seconds! I must say, I guess having Christine Quinn for a neighbor doesn't hurt. So now we get to see firefighters looking up at our windows with worried faces and more of our neighbors running frantically out of the building. At this point, we still had our window open, but a quick minute later (firefighters are FIT, they had to run up 12 flights with equipment!) the police and FDNY still outside on the sidewalk starting yelling for us to get out of the windows as a shower of hot broken glass flew past us. A few pieces landed in the kitchen right by Tony's bowl and Tyler burned his fingers picking them up. We finally closed our windows (my camera battery was dying anyway) when the water spray began to fall.
In the background of all this, of course I'm panicking, (also taking pictures) crying, saying "what do we do? Do we try to leave?" Tony hates the smell of smoke and was barking and whimpering his head off. I imagined hobbling down five flights of stairs with the cane and dog in tow, and then hobbling back up, but when Tyler checked the hallway doors, they were locked, presumably so that the people on the higher floors (where we heard later that the smoke was very thick) could get out unimpeded by panicky lower floor dwellers who didn't need to evacuate. Plus, Tyler said that fire goes up, and since we live below where the fire was, we stayed put.
The whole thing was over in a matter of about 30 minutes, but I'm guessing it won't be over for quite some time for our wacky neighbor, or for the poor people who live near him with lots of smoke and water damage.