finally take a second step 终于挪出第二步


Not long after I moved back to DC, I contacted several fire departments in the area and explained to them my fire project, hoping they would help me gain access for my fire project. They sounded quite understanding and ready to help. I had been waiting for them to call me.

When there was a fire in Frederick, MD. They didn’t call. So I emailed them. They gave me a good reason that I could not access the property.

So I waited a few more weeks.

Nothing happened.

Today, after searching online for news and finding four houses caught in a fire in northwest DC last week, I simply skipped the fire department and drove to where the fire happened.

The fire was pretty bad. I talked to the people in the neighborhood. Some residents there are new immigrants and can speak only limited English. However, their children were born in this country and speak both Spanish and English. As I am always fond of children and they can always feel that and accept me because of that, I got lots of information about the fire. A 13-year-old boy named Kevin Villatoro told me the fire started from the back of the basement, but no one really knew what the real cause of the fire was. An adult man, who claimed to be the first to spot the fire and call 911, asserted it was arson. I was amazed how a young boy can be less assertive and more mature than an adult.

Kevin  helped me contact one of his neighbors whose house was totally destroyed by fire. And he served as my translator, too, since the house owner could  hardly speak English. He told me to come back around 8:30 tomorrow morning, because the owner would come to the damaged house then. Not long after I left the neighborhood. Kevin called me and told me the change of time. “They are going to come at 11 instead of 8:30,” he told me. He took it very seriously that he gave me the correct information so that I wouldn’t think of him as a liar.


几天前,华盛顿西北一个社区有房失火,殃及邻居。这次,我也不求这些老爷了。自己直接去找人。那社区属中下阶层,住户多是新移民,很多人都不会说英语。但他们的小孩是在美国出生的,都会说西班牙语和英语。一个名叫Kevin Villatoro的小男孩,就热情地充当了我的翻译和助手,提供所有我他知道的信息。他说火灾是从地下室后面开始的,还不知道具体的起火原因。一个年纪约莫三十的男人则武断声称那火是人为纵火案。一个13岁的男孩居然比一个30岁的大男人更谨慎、更成熟。真让我觉得不可思议。


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