There are a lot of great things that happen in the fire station. We make a lot of good friends, we eat a lot of good food, and we tell a lot of jokes. Just like most jobs, there are also a few things that are really hard to handle in the fire station.
One of the toughest things about being a firefighter is spending holidays at the fire station. Probably the worst day for firefighters is Christmas. Everyone is at home opening presents, playing with the kids and spending time with relatives. July Fourth has always been my favorite holiday, which is why it is the worst day for me to work. July Fourth is supposed to be a day of fun, grilling, boating, and blowing things up. We can do a couple of these things in the station, but boating and blowing things up won’t be happening at the fire station. We also work a lot of family birthdays, anniversaries, and we miss some school programs.
There are some good things and some bad things about working a twenty four hour shift. The best thing about a twenty four hour shift is the two days off after you work. But, there are also a few bad things that go with that schedule. Most families eat dinner together, firefighter’s families eat leftovers or order pizza when dad is at work. There are also things that go with a normal schedule that we miss, watching TV shows with family, putting the kids to bed, and just the normal routines of family aren’t so routine when your away every third night.
Everyone had a couple people in their life that get under your skin, maybe a neighbor, or a relative. You can do a lot to avoid that relative or neighbor but when you work with someone that get under your skin it can be tough. Try working one third of your life with that one upper guy that always did whatever you did better. We do a lot of things together and sometimes we have to do it with someone we don’t like.
On that same note, there really is no privacy in the fire station. No matter what you want to do there is bound to be someone that wants to know what you are doing. Just like a 3 year old child, they keep asking questions like “what are you reading?”, “what are you doing?” After a few of those questions you just close up the book, and walk away and look for another place to hang, until someone else asks you the same questions. These people asking the questions don’t mean anything bad, they just want someone to talk to, when you want some privacy.
Some would say the danger, the heat, the cold, or breathing smoke is the worst thing about being a firefighter. Those things all have to be dealt with, but these people things are the hardest things to deal with in the fire station, there is no good way to deal with them.
By John Morse
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