Every year in October (this year it was on the 7th), the Berkeley Fire Department holds an Open House for the community. We had wanted to go last year, but something else was going on the same day.
This year Steve was out of town, so it was a good time for me to take the kids to do something special and take our minds off the sad fact that daddy wasn't with us.
Jared was very excited about going. When we arrived, the door to the fire department was up, and Jared and Alexa headed straight for the fire equipment. We weren't able to try any on, but it was fun to look at the hats, boots and coats. Then we wandered over to a large giveaway table where we picked up our own plastic firemen hats, pins, pencils, balloons, and some cookies.
Then the kids climbed inside one of the fire trucks. They seeed to enjoy themselves, although they had gotten in their heads that they were going to drive in the truck with the firemen, so they were a bit disappointed that it wasn't going to happen.
Several Coast Guard boats were parked in the lot across the street. Jared climbed on board with my friend's husband and her son. Alexa seemed a bit overwhelmed, so she stayed with me and waved at the boys when they peeked their heads out.
I think the most memorable thing we did was go into a smoke house. I had never done anything like this before. They have a small trailor that's made out to look like a two story house. They have a front section that simulates a living room with a fireplace. Towards the back is a kitchen area, and then you climb up stairs to go into a bedroom. At each section, a fireman goes over saftey regulations specific to that room.
It was very crowded with kids, and I had to really lean over when we walked from room to room. Then when we walked up the stairs, they started to simulate a real fire. A real fire alarm went off, and the room started to fill with smoke. I was sure the kids were going to freak out because I couldn't see them at all and it was very loud, but we somehow crawled across the room, and then a fireman carried them down the ladder. All in all, very memorable.