Everyday I enjoy looking at my camellia flowers from the window of my back kitchen. There are often tits and turtle doves, and it feels like a Disney movie in which I am the princess. Except that today, I was more like the hero of an action movie, drama, or maybe even a thriller as I wonder if there will be retaliations.
I was looking at my camellia flowers, and I saw huge flames licking the trees trunk beyond my fence. I didn’t know how far it was from my garden, but the flames were going about 6 or 8 meters high.
I remained calm. I grabbed my Ipad, ran, took some pictures and videos of the fire and then I went to the town council. Met the lovely head of staff there who confirmed that there had been no authorisations for a fire. Fires have been forbidden where I live. No fire in gardens, or parks, no fire, full stop. Some staff was sent to investigate. But still no sign of firemen.
When you pass it on, and nothing seems to happen in a vigorous manner, it’s time to act. I acted. I called the firemen, who in turn called the gendarmes. I saw the big red truck arrive, and I accompanied them to where the fire was.
The firemen arrived
That’s when it went wrong. I saw the tree trunks that were turning into coal. I saw that fire that was illegal, and uncontrolled. I should have washed my mouth with soap that morning, but forgot, and I yelled a couple of insults at that arsonist who looked very confused. He didn’t reply. He didn’t have to. The fireman in charge of the intervention saw my Ipad. I said, I have pictures and videos, look there was a big fire over there, I had to call you. The fireman started telling me that he was there for the fire nothing else. I was ok with that. But even though he was saying it, he started to try to intimidate me. He started saying that he knew my phone number, that he would report me for vituperating all those rude words – yes there was a lot of them, I was upset, that arsonist is a *beep* *beep* *beep*. He added that what I did was punishable and that he would call the authorities to have me locked. Much taller and bulkier than me, he moved forward, standing right in front of me, looking down, his nose trying to touch mine, trying to scare me. Really trying to threaten, intimidate, and scare me.
He tried to intimidate me
It failed. You don’t scare me, I said. I’m going back to the town council, and I will tell it to the gendarmes, I added. I moved away. He tried to have the last word. But again, I didn’t let him.
I wonder. Why is it that that fireman reacted this way?
- Is it because I am a woman?
- Is it because I had photographic evidence of what happened?
- Is it because I had dyed my bleached hair with a bright purple the day before?
- Or is it because the arsonist turned out to be an officer fireman with whom he works?
Probably a bit of everything and a lot of the last hypothesis.
You could call that quixotic, ubuesque, or plain scandalous. You warn the right people of a dangerous situation, and you get intimidated for more or less nebulous or nefarious reasons.
Is it ok? No, it’s not. Do people care? I don’t think they do. Injustice doesn’t move anyone here.
And by the way *beep* *beep* *beep*.