How quickly can you pack up a concert harp and get it out the house?
Well it seems that I can do it less than 90 seconds....
Last night my shed caught fire - who knows why? Electrical? Stray firework? The shed is right up against our converted double garage, (which has LOADS of my business equipment in, plus all my husband's instruments and his life times collection of sheet music), which is right next to our house.
So when the shed caught fire and the flames were 20 feet high and licking the roof of the garage it seemed like that was going to go up in flames too.
First thought after calling the fire brigade was - EVERYONE OUT.
That's our 2 teenage kids, our dog, student (that my husband was teaching in the garage at the time) and her mother out on the opposite side of our street watching the flames coming from behind the garage.
Whilst my husband and a neighbour were moving as much gear as possible before the fire engines got there (without getting anywhere close to the fire of course), I suddenly panic about the fire spreading to the garage... and then to the house.... and know that I have to get my harp out of the house now.
FFS - I know - very stupid, but it seemed logical at the time.
So apparently not only can I find my outer harp cover in the dark (as all our electricity was out), I can move the harp at speed without it being strapped properly to the trolley, get it out the door without the special door ramps which are essential for getting it over the awkward door threshold and out across the road in about 90 seconds.
Luckily 2 fire engines and an hour later, no one was hurt, only one corner of the garage roof had started to catch fire, and they put that out without any water damage to any of our gear in there.
How lucky are we? No one hurt and our ability to carry on our business intact.
Unfortunately I found out today that I had done something last year which I had never done before, and that is to forget to re-new our buildings and contents insurance. SIGH.
The whole experience was so GOD DAMN scary and happened so fast, that thank god, due to the fantastic fire service we are all ok.
The fact that we are going to have to live off tin beans for god knows how long whilst we pay to get the building repaired is a moot point.
Lauren Scott is a harpist & composer and has been blogging on Harpyness for over 10 years.
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