Joe was visiting from Launceston for dinner, and Kirsty had been staying with us for a few days, visiting from London. We had finished dinner and were just brushing the boys' teeth and urging them towards bed. It had been an exciting evening, as Joe had just told us that he and Jill are expecting a baby in September!
Suddenly the lights flickered a few times, then we heard a bang from the bathroom. The old exhaust fan over the shower bay had been switched on for some time, overheated and caught fire, then mostly fallen into the shower. It seems that when it stopped working properly, the owner put in a new heat/light/fan unit and left the old one in place and wired up.
Elf rang the fire brigade while Kirsty ushered the boys outside. Joe took charge in the bathroom, on account of his electrical trades experience. He bravely prised the burning plastic remains of the fan out of the ceiling before the fire spread up into the roof space, and then ladled water onto the flames (now it was thoroughly disconnected from the power).
The police and fire brigade were very quick in responding. There was a bit of smouldering insulation to put out in the roof but everyone agreed Joe had done a sterling job limiting the damage.
The boys were very excited by the fire engine and the whole business, although Marcus is old enough to be excited and worried at the same time. He needed lots of reassuring as we tucked him in that it wouldn't happen again while we were asleep.
We gave the owner the bad news today and we'll see in the next few days what is going to happen.