When I was a young boy, I couldn't stay away from fire - there is some allure for boys. Playing with fire is not a metaphor, but a real activity. We got matches, we tried rubbing sticks, we lit grass clumps from mowed lawns with magnifying glasses. And I became a Boy Scout - one of the benefits was that it legitimized using fire - what's camping without a campfire? We were just mesmerized by fire and flames.
The photo was taken on Carmine Street in the Village. It was a practice session involving members of CERT - Community Emergency Response Team - neighborhood and community-based volunteers that undergo an intensive, 11-week training program in disaster preparedness and basic response skills. Volunteers took turns putting out a small fire. The billowing flames in the evening light was quite a spectacle.
But, regardless of the merits of the program, everyone observing was drawn by the mesmerizing effect of those flames.
Whenever I see firemen, I always feel that somewhere in there is a little boy who never outgrew his interest in fire; just transmuted it into a profession. Good for all concerned, n'est-ce pas?