Came home from work tonight and found the street blocked, with several fire engines and emergency vehicles in front of my house. I drove around the back way, and to my personal relief determined that the fire was not Flippist World Headquarters, but was located two doors down. The little red house was always a problem property, run-down and it had more more than one shady occupant in its past. Still, a family had moved in a few years ago and fixed it up a little; they seemed to be doing fine. No word on them, there were no ambulances, they may not have been home.
This is the situation. The house is beyond repair. Our neighborhood will be changed. In the go-go years of the housing boom, houses were being built on the occasional empty lot. Now, many homes stand empty and those which are torn down don't get replaced. Many of the houses around here are from the 1920's. Many more are from the 1800's. There are a few newer ones, ones that were built after the tornado of 1939. The little red house was not distinguished architecture by any means, but its absence will leave a hole in our lives and an empty lot on our street.