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November 14, 2011
By Jennifer Grigg

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Nov. 14, 2011 – I’m not really one of those jump-out-of-bed-and-hit-the-ground-running types of people. I’m more of an ugh-morning-already?-I-need-coffee-turn-on-Breakfast-Television-and-sit-there-in-a-fog-until-the-caffeine-starts-to-kick-in kind of person.

Nov. 14, 2011 – I’m not really one of those jump-out-of-bed-and-hit-the-ground-running types of people. I’m more of an ugh-morning-already?-I-need-coffee-turn-on-Breakfast-Television-and-sit-there-in-a-fog-until-the-caffeine-starts-to-kick-in kind of person.

You may be thinking that I sound lazy, or unmotivated perhaps.

I prefer to think of myself as one who likes to wake up gradually, nice and slowly, easing into the day, just like the sunrise.

I transition from darkness to a big ball of light and energy, (well maybe not energy, but light for sure, however dim it may be) with the help of my beloved cup of joe. No matter what I may have to do on any given day, it always starts the same way.

Until . . . tomorrow, that is. I asked a fellow firefighter if he would be so kind as to spend some time at the fire hall with me going over a few things as a refresher, since I’ve been away from it for a while (and because I don’t want to feel like a total rookie when I do finally make my first call, which, by the way, still waiting for).

I thought we could take one of the trucks out and do some driver training. I kept my DZ licence up to date even while I wasn’t on the department, but it’s been about four years since I’ve driven a fire truck, and I drive a Jeep TJ, so there’s a bit of a difference in size, and turning radius.

I thought it would be a good opportunity to go over the trucks and make sure the equipment is still in the same place as it was before, (you know, in case someone asks me to go and get a water hammer – I’d hate to not know where that is on the truck) and maybe even throw on a pack and see how I do with it. Remember, the new MSAs with all the bells and whistles? I believe I’ve mentioned them before. Hopefully buddy* (*names have been changed to protect the innocent in case I write anything about him after tomorrow) doesn’t decide it would be fun to make me do speed drills. (Stay tuned for YouTube video if he does).

Just for the record, when I did a recruit course last spring, we did speed drills many, many times and I’m proud to say that even though I was almost twice the age of the “kids” in the class, I beat them all more than once. And it had little to do with the fact that I’m about 5’2” and closer to the ground so I was half dressed as soon as I stepped into my boots. But really, it’s all about the speed. I’m that fast.

Back to the spiel about my morning routine: when I asked buddy if he had time to meet me tomorrow and he agreed, I told him any time before 3 p.m. would work for me (my daughter has hockey game at 3 – can’t miss it!). At this point I’m thinking, “Tomorrow’s Saturday, no need to rush out the door so 9 or 10am would work for me”. Keeping in mind that the conversation is taking place via text messages, the reply I get is, “bring LDD and pick me up at 8.” My reply: “Ick. OK.” He texts back, “DEDICATION . . . that’s what I like to see.” I laughed, but the truth is, it absolutely is something that I would get out of bed for and get moving early on a Saturday morning.

 jen-truck  
 Back in the game and feeling good!  

Jennifer Mabee is a volunteer with the Township of Georgian Bay Fire
Department in Ontario. She began her fire fighting career with the
Township of Georgian Bay in 1997 and became the department’s fire
prevention officer in 2000 and a captain in 2003. She was a fire
inspector with the City of Mississauga Fire and Emergency Services
before taking time off to focus on family, and is excited to be back at
it. E-mail her at
jhook0312@yahoo.ca

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