a good way to get to know more about firefighters and the equipment they use is to visit a fire station when it's not an emergency, like we did. we may not have released all the kids' fear, especially ander's when he saw and heard a firefighter completely geared up with 50 pounds of safety equipment, but giving us all the opportunity to explore and ask and listen and learn was reassuring and eye-opening.
what was particularly special about this unit was its responsiveness to our kids' interests and comfort levels. all the alarms were temporarily silenced for our visit, no sirens were sounded. we got to see where the firefighters live and work. ander was hoping he'd get to slide down the pole, since he does it so well and so often at the playground, but that was off limits. what he did get to do, though, was climb up into the brand-new pumper engine, and try his hand at spraying water from a real fire hose.
i think this trip did have a positive impact on ander; when we saw (and heard) several emergency vehicles coming near to us at the park this afternoon, he didn't bat an eye of concern about the firefighters pouring out of them. i think he understood that they were around to help.
thank you so much, woodland fire station number one, for all the things you do to make this a safer neighborhood to live in.
photos not taken by me are courtesy of our visiting friend, shari.