I returned back to my house Saturday evening to catch a pungent whiff of natural gas settling in the front hallway. The stench was unmistakable, so I walked to the road and made a quick phone call to 911. As a police reporter, I called emergency dispatchers hundreds of times to ask them questions. Now I was asking them for help.
Luckily, the local fire department is just a half-mile away, so emergency responders were there in less than 10 minutes. They entered my townhouse and quickly determined the stove was spewing natural gas for unknown reasons. I'm sure they get some minor cases, but the first firefighter who entered made it clear this was the real deal. "Oh yeah!" the assistant chief shouted before retreating to his truck for more equipment. They clamped the connection and opened the windows. Within 15 minutes, the natural gas had dissipated and we were back in the house.
So today I went out in search of a new gas stove from The Home Depot. That's the funny thing about not having a job. Your income might be reduced, but the bills keep on rolling. As I swiped my credit card to drop $575 for the GE oven, I thought it might be wise to ask for a job application, as well. With the economy slogging along through Bush's Recession, I wonder if that potential part-time job might come in handy in the very near future. Especially after I receive this month's gas bill.
5 months ago