This week, I'm reading The Fire Inside: Firefighters Talk About Their Lives by Steve Delsohn which is feeding my disaster-survival fetish. Much of the book is in the words of the firefighters themselves, so this is a bit of a different perspective than most of what I've read.
There is more to being a firefighter than most people know--the professional or volunteer firefighter must find different kinds of courage as he or she copes with injuries, earthquakes, hazardous waste, wildfire, and arson. And what drives each firefighter is complex, too. Some are bound to the profession by family tradition; others know they were never meant for nine-to-five. What unites them are their poignant stories and the courage they manage to find.
In their own words, these firefighters explore what it is about themselves that drives them to run into burning building and meet disaster head-on while everyone else is running out. They describe the adrenaline rush and pride that got them started and keeps them climbing back onto the fire truck, frankly discussing the emotional toll their jobs have taken on themselves and their families. As Delsohn points out, almost every firefighter seems haunted, "if not by an unforgettable self-doubt, then by something horrible [he or she] witnessed. These remarkable stories will touch readers' hearts and take their breath away.
Many of them were "fire department brats." With fathers or brothers or uncles already firefighters, they belonged to the fraternity even as children. At barbecues and parties they felt the camaraderie. When relatives won medals they basked in reflected glory. One day, they promised themselves, they would speed to mishaps on blaring red fire engines. They would rescue people from burning houses. Because this was something more than the family business. It was the highest calling.
It's gut-check time, nervous time, you can't drive a needle up your ass with a hammer. Because you all just heard it come over the radio: "All units deploy your tents. We are cut off."
Would you read this?
Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following: Grab your current readOpen to a random pageShare two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page. BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers! To see what others are sharing on the Teaser Tuesdays, check the comments at: http://adailyrhythm.com/
Share the first paragraph (or a few) from a book you are reading. Here's the link: Bibliophile By The Sea