Fire in Singgah Mata, Asia City in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah

Lunch took a bit of an exciting twist this afternoon. A tiny bit.

We were having lunch at Pete’s Corner in the older part of Asia City, sometimes still referred to as Singgah Mata, when smoke started to cloud the sun from somewhere over towards where both Julia and I parked our cars. “Geez,” I mused, “I sure hope it isn’t burning anywhere near my car”. Julia’s car was probably closer, so out of concern and because of her journalistic curiosity, she got up for a gander. It wasn’t exciting enough to warrant an in depth look, so we finished our lunch with wafts of burning plastic occasionally peppering Pete’s Thursday special.

By the time we finished, a sizable crowd had emerged and as I had to walk that way towards my car anyway, we strolled along to join the gawkers. There weren’t any visible flames, but somewhere within the office block something was clearly on fire, smoke billowing from air ducts and shops surrounding the Securiforce office, which appeared to be the office on fire.

Singgah Mata - Asia City on Fire It looked like the herbal suppliment store was one fire. Hot herbs!But the Fire Department guys knew beter and identified Securiforce as the culprit.

We weren’t yet near the site when Kota Kinabalu’s finest arrived at the scene, got kitted and disappeared into the office. Moments later another team arrived with a hose and went the same way. In the absence of flames, I wasn’t compelled to stay and watch, besides, the smell of melting plastics was nauseating me and I wasn’t prepared to lose my lunch.

Not so serious: one truck can do the job.Where there’s smoke… The fire as seen from the roof of Asia CityThe Mall in Singgah Mata - Second block over from Asia City

I’ll have to wait for tomorrow’s newspapers to see what actually happened.

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