Fire

Sunday, 30 September 2012 at 1:10 – 2:50 am

Just before my parents’ first visit to Australia in late 2012, Victorian house next door caught fire, resulting in a series of gas bottle explosions, melted plastic and thick dark smoke coming out of it until the early hours of the morning. I was the first one to call triple zero.

I have a memory of being in a slow motion, and taking instructions to calm down from a stranger on a street. But then, time sped up quickly and the logical impulse kicked in. Evacuating a car, our one-eyed cat and our young tenant, helping a severely burnt person in our bathtub, experiencing shock, the next twelve months and even years would be covered by a fog of these memories and ptsd.

years later, any smell of smoke still brings up the memories of the event.

In trying to process this event I recorded these images shortly in the aftermath. I knew I couldn’t look at them in the first few years. But now I can.

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