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Fire at the Traffic Lights. A True Story

Updated on September 21, 2018
manatita44 profile image

Manatita is an esteemed author living in London, UK. He writes spiritual books, flash fiction and esoteric poetry, his favourite genre.


I pay homage to the traffic-lights on the A40, that suddenly turned red and made me stop, just as the bonnet of my cute little Allegro opened and burst into flames. Adrenaline pumping, I had no time for small niceties, as self-preservation kicked in and I opened the door on the right and jumped out.

My wife, sitting to my left, simultaneously did the same, but for whatever reasons - vanity perhaps - she decided to dash back into the car to collect her purple handbag.

It was a cool September evening. Windows half down, light winds caressing my cheeks, I listened as Marley’s sweet lyrical tones, made their way into a serene and peaceful mind. I felt blessed. I was doing perhaps fifty in my beast of an Allegro, swinging with the rhythms and having an occasional chat with my wife, about the joys of music.


As if to emphasize this, I could hear Robert Nesta Marley’s ‘beat me with music, beat me with music now’, swaying in my heart. ‘One good thing about music’, makes me feel ah wright.’ He sang.

Then the traffic-light came to our rescue and my wife screamed as she jumped out. The male driver from the car behind, appeared as if from no where with his foam cylinder, and sprayed the bonnet, just in time for my wife to collect her bag and run for it. Thankfully, no explosions came, apprehensions died down and we abandoned the car, making our way to the path on the right.

A few phone calls and things got sorted. I never owned another Allegro and in fact commuted by train soon afterwards. Still, I remained ever grateful for the knight in ‘charging armour’, who appeared as manna from Heaven, raining down blows of foam, upon the bonnet of my car.

-Manatita. 19th September, 2018.

Serious fires

Have you witnessed or been ainvolved with a serious fire?

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© 2018 manatita44


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  • manatita44 profile imageAUTHOR


    2 years ago from london

    Mr Happy you have the right name. This is to ofset your jinx spirit. Lol

    Seriously, fire are potentially deadly fuel. Glad you are ok. Thank you so much!!

  • Mr. Happy profile image

    Mr. Happy 

    2 years ago from Toronto, Canada

    "The male driver from the car behind, appeared as if from no where with his foam cylinder, and sprayed the bonnet" - So, last year as I was traveling the northern roads of Ontario, Canada, I passed by a car fully engulfed in flames. Initially, I thought I should stop because driving by a car fully on fire, seemed a little dangerous but I proceeded anyway. The Gods are with me and I am thankful. That experience prompted me to start my camping season this year by buying a fire-estinguisher for the car: a small one but good enough to put a small fire out. I urge people to get those small canisters and keep them in the trunk. Or, in the "boot" - isn't that what You call it in the UK?

    I also burned down the kitchen a few springs ago. Had no fire-estinguisher in the house and had to call the fire-fighters. Now, I have a fire-estinguisher by the kitchen as well. Haha!! I can be a walking disaster sometimes. Gotta be careful! lol : )

    All the best!

  • manatita44 profile imageAUTHOR


    2 years ago from london

    Indeed Dora.

    Great reason to be grateful indeed! Thank you so much!

  • MsDora profile image

    Dora Weithers 

    2 years ago from The Caribbean

    I rejoice with you over this divinely ordained rescue. Great reason to be ever grateful.

  • manatita44 profile imageAUTHOR


    2 years ago from london

    Still don't know. Loose connections perhaps. About 37 years ago. Thank you Shauna.

  • bravewarrior profile image

    Shauna L Bowling 

    2 years ago from Central Florida

    OMG, Manatita! What a terrifying experience! Thank God for the Good Samaritan behind you. Whew! What caused the fire?

  • manatita44 profile imageAUTHOR


    2 years ago from london

    Lol. You do notice the little embellishments. She did go back for her bag, Li-jen. I don't even remember the colour. It was around 1982-83, and the Bob Marley, I'm not sure about. But I like him though. I was and still is an ardent fan, as I am of Mohammed Ali. Thank you so much!!

  • Li-Jen Hew profile image

    Li-Jen Hew 

    2 years ago

    Hey Manatita. Glad that you and your wife were saved quickly. Hope that both of you have found out the cause of the fire so it won't happen again! At least you still kept your sense of humour after what happened. Recalling the music and your wife taking out the purple handbag...especially the mention of the colour...haha. It's a way of moving on. Thanks for sharing and take care.

  • manatita44 profile imageAUTHOR


    2 years ago from london

    Yes Rajan.

    God's Grace and all was well. Gratitude.

  • rajan jolly profile image

    Rajan Singh Jolly 

    2 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA.

    Thank God you and your wife are safe. The very thought is scary.

  • manatita44 profile imageAUTHOR


    2 years ago from london

    Yes, indeed. You do a lot of good with your poetry and I mines. Let us continue … let us continue. Amitabha! (Amitofa) Buddha Bless You!

  • Senoritaa profile image

    Rinita Sen 

    2 years ago

    Such a positive story. The world is beautiful because of such good samaritans.

  • manatita44 profile imageAUTHOR


    2 years ago from london

    Wow! more alarming than mines Bro! So glad that all was good with you both. Varanasi saved you, perhaps. Some say it is a very holy place. Either way, The Gods were looking down.

    I came home last week only to find that my opposite neighbours house had burnt down. I still don't know what happened,but I hear that she is safe. Thank God! Jai Ram indeed!!

  • Venkatachari M profile image

    Venkatachari M 

    2 years ago from Hyderabad, India

    A very alarming story, my Brother, Manatita. Thanks that you and your wife escaped safely.

    I had some different experience in my life. It was my TV that burnt suddenly in the midnight. We were sleeping. The burning light awakened us and immediately unplugged the wires and tried to extinguish the fire with some coarse rugs. It damaged the TV entirely and a little portion of the window frame and one of its door near it. No injury to any of us. Really God saved us by awakening me and my wife timely. Perhaps it happened in the year 2001 or so when we were living in Varanasi.

  • manatita44 profile imageAUTHOR


    2 years ago from london


    The handbag of a woman is very precious.

    So you had that experience too. Father's admiration? Perhaps he thought you did a great thing. Lol

    Thanks a lot Bro. Don't drive any more.


    I did not even know that drivers carried those cylinders. My wife left for America in 1983. So it was a long time ago. A true life-saver, that one. Gratitude.

  • Sean Dragon profile image

    Ioannis Arvanitis 

    2 years ago from Greece, Almyros

    Well, I have lived this too. I was about 20 years old and I was driving my father's car. It was the time when - as a young man - I thought I was immortal! I managed to stop the fire with the fire extinguisher and fortunately with no great damage. But it was a great lesson for the young me, a lesson of living the time, of facing the weakness against the games of 'luck', and gratitude. I came out wiser and strangely happier, not to mention how glad I felt with my father's admiration! It is possible that I was also listening to Marley's reggae as it was my favourite music while I was driving! Ha! Ha!

    Life has its way, like it or not, is the best at any time.

    Thank you for sharing, my brother, and I pray for you not to need another "lesson" like this.

    Thank God you are safe!


    PS: I had never thought how precious is a purple handbag! Ha! Ha! My Love to your wife...

  • AliciaC profile image

    Linda Crampton 

    2 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

    I'm glad nobody was hurt in the fire. It's great that the person behind you was so helpful. I hope my car never catches fire, but if it ever does I hope I'm as lucky as you and your wife were.

  • manatita44 profile imageAUTHOR


    2 years ago from london

    So sorry Liz.

    First I welcome you with all my love.

    Fire can be such a devastating thing! My neighbours house was burnt down. I still dont know why.

    So sorry about your workshop. Some things are quite costly to repair. God's grace be with you and yours.

    She was brave, Doris.

    Again at least it sounded small with an unknown cause. I'm so careful as I get older.

  • MizBejabbers profile image

    Doris James MizBejabbers 

    2 years ago from Beautiful South

    That sounded very serious. Thank goodness you and your wife came through it all right. I was driving my mother-in-law's car to work one day when smoke poured from the hood. I pulled over and cut the engine. The smoke stopped. We had her car examined but the cause of the fire was not found. She drove that car many more years. It was a Ford Galaxy, and that was many years ago.

  • DzyMsLizzy profile image

    Liz Elias 

    2 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Our fire, however, was in our workshop. Destroyed several tools, as well as about 2/3 of our holiday decorations that had just been gotten down from the attic.

    The cause was a defective propane heater, which, when turned off, instead of shutting down, the flame went downward, and burned through the hose connecting it to the supply tank. At that point, the hose was a flame-throwing dragon, swishing about setting fire to things in the vicinity.

    While there was not any actual damage to the structure, (thanks to quick response by the fire department), everything in sight was blackened, and the shop still had to be gutted back to the studs to replace the sheetrock and cabinets.

    It was a miserable experience that I wish upon no one.

  • manatita44 profile imageAUTHOR


    2 years ago from london

    True. I don't even drive anymore. Pretty scary stuff! Thank you so much!

  • Carb Diva profile image

    Linda Lum 

    2 years ago from Washington State, USA

    Wow, Manatita. I do believe that there are angels on earth and you certainly had one that day. Sorry about your car, but a car can be replaced.

  • manatita44 profile imageAUTHOR


    2 years ago from london

    Ha ha. They did not serve us well. Sorry Mr Geo. Thanks Bro.


    Yes, yes. A novel experience for me on all counts. I was amazed! Thanks so much, my brother.

  • billybuc profile image

    Bill Holland 

    2 years ago from Olympia, WA

    There is something very primal about a car fire...or house fire...they certainly get the heart pounding, that's for sure. :) Like you, I would never own one of those cars again....mine was a Geo, never to be seen in my garage again.

  • The0NatureBoy profile image

    Elijah A Alexander Jr 

    2 years ago from Washington DC

    Everything happens in the instant they do with a message of some kind in them is the law of existence.

    Quite an interesting story, I can't imagine how you felt seeing someone so prepared at the very instant of your need. Coincidences are not miracles but they sure look like at such times. Thanks for sharing it.

  • manatita44 profile imageAUTHOR


    2 years ago from london

    Ha ha. Funny. Isn't Britain the mother and America the disobedient daughter? (Sweet Chuckle)

    Thanks a lot Bro.

  • Ericdierker profile image

    Eric Dierker 

    2 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

    Cool story as you are now fine to tell it, all is well that ends well. I can tell you that you were lucky not to get into a bigger wreck driving on that side of the road ;-)


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