I have never been so mortified in my entire life.

What started out as an ordinary night soon turned into one I'd never forget. I was making myself a cauliflower crust pesto pizza (because I like good food, but want to have that body-ody-ody ready for the Summer). As it was cooking, I'd walk over to the oven and check on it to make sure the mozzarella was melting to perfection (you know, when it browns ever so slightly on the top!). Until finally, the timer on my phone went off, and it was done. Yes!

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It's important to note that I have an older oven in my apartment. Meaning there are only knobs to turn the gas on and off, and a knob to operate the oven. That's it. No clock, no fancy buttons, I don't even have a timer on there.

I took my pizza out of the oven and turned it off (or so I thought). And the second I did that, my smoke alarm went off. I ran over and fanned the alarm, but when it wouldn't quiet, I silenced it manually because I didn't see anything wrong. Then when I walked back over to the oven, I noticed the bottom was glowing, which was odd. And then the smoke alarm went off again.

I pulled out the bottom drawer and saw flames, so I panicked - grabbed my stuffed animal, my purse, and dialed 911 as I ran out of my apartment. The fire department was on their way, but my neighbor found me in the hallway and offered to help me put out the fire. I searched my bag for my keys - which I then had realized I left on my counter as I ran out in a panic. So we started knocking on everyone's doors and telling them to evacuate. After that, my neighbor and I went into my pool area to check on my apartment through my window, and thankfully everything was still okay.

Finally, the fire department arrived, and they had to BREAK DOWN MY DOOR. It was hard to watch, but I was relieved they were getting inside to stop the fire. And that relief turned into pure and utter embarrassment 3 seconds later when I heard the firefighter say "she turned the broiler on."

Yes, friends - apparently I started my broiler. Because I only have a knob that operates the oven, I thought I had turned it off, but I turned it in the opposite direction and it was upside down. While it looked like it said off, it was actually flipped to broil on high, which set off the smoke alarms. And because I've never needed to use a broiler in my life and only use the bottom drawer in my stove for storage, I had no idea that it started actual flames in your oven. I literally kept saying "I have a small fire at the bottom of my oven."

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The firefighters were so kind to me and consoled me when I apologized profusely and said it happens more than I think. I felt so bad for unintentionally wasting their time. I am so incredibly thankful for their fast action, bravery,  and help in a situation that definitely could have been a lot worse.

I am also thankful for my wonderful and understanding neighbors, who all came together to help me in an emergency, and who told me I have nothing to be embarrassed about (I still am mortified).

Long story short - I will now ALWAYS make sure I turn the oven knob in the correct direction. I will learn to be more calm and level-headed in emergency situations. And I definitely won't ever be using that broiler!

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