As you may or may not know, we had an apartment fire last week and are homeless for a while. An electrical fire started in the wall in the basement, and spread to our upstairs apartment through the wiring. Every single thing now smells like smoke, the firepersons ripped our kitchen out of the walls to get to the wiring, there's a hole in the roof, every window is broken save one, and the apartment will not be livable for many months.
The good news: we're not living on the street, no one was hurt (exept two cats who died downstairs - very sad), nothing in our possessions was melted/charred/soaked, we're insured, we got out of our phone/internet contract painlessly, and I'm doing some much-needed spring cleaning. They say that if the fire crew had arrived 10 minutes later, the house might have actually burned actual down. The firemen were quite destructive, but with good cause!
I took some photos of the damage that I thought you might enjoy. It's pretty intense. I couldn't capture the smell, but it's kind of like a campfire rather than a typical electrical fire so that might help you imagine. A friend smelled me and said "mmm... mesquite!" Our car will smell like smoke forever I think. If you help us, so will yours. That's why we're telling all of our lovely friends to hold off helping us until we get a better sense of what insurance will pay for in terms of professional cleaning.
These photos are a little blurry because it is DARK in there and I don't use flash. Everything in the photos is exactly as it was left by the fire and its fighters.
One of the selling features of the apartment was the natural light.
There is a gash in the door AND in the wall beside the door.
I left the spatula in the entranceway for days, out of respect.
That oil-drum-like thing turns out to be the lazy susan from under the kitchen counter, presumably containing much food.
Somehow the toaster is still sitting in its normal place.
Everything is where it was after firedude destruction.
I feel like an archeologist.
It took me about four visits to realise that this spotted piece of crappy wood used to be our countertop. Those are the footprints of dirty dishes that were on the counter before its sudden demolition.
Charred wiring behind the kitchen wall. This is why the fire crew ripped our counters and cupboards out.
Those soot-free patches were once drama books that now have dirty bootprints on them.
The hole in the roof, tarped over. That gash is longer than the ceiling is high.
My studio, covered in insulation, soot and broken glass.
That is a Backgammon set, amidst broken glass.
It's a good thing we hate this loveseat. But now we can't even put it to the curb in good conscience.