Coming from the bus on the back of a motorcycle I saw a fire under a car parked on the street outside my condo village. I thumped the driver and yelled "Stop!"
No way he's driving me by a vehicle with a fire ball under it. So he stops, I pay him and he zooms off. I'm at the corner, a good way off from the fire under the car. Now the security guards and the drivers at the mo'cycle station get active - no fire extinguisher. I'm afraid the vehicle will blow so I stay where I am. Traffic keeps rounding the corner - then stops when the drivers see the action.
I hear the first emergency vehicle. I set down my bag of groceries and start motioning for the stopped drivers to back up, turn and keep going down the main artery I'll call it. I'm waving at the other traffic that wants to turn into my street and wave them forward away from the corner. The drivers are cooperating and they get out of the way. I see the emerg vehicle pulling in and by the time it arrives to turn the corner the other cars have moved out of the way.
They stop and thank me in Thai, saluted me and carry on as I give them the thumbs up with a grin. (Why take the time to stop wandered through the caverns of my mind at the time, but hey, I wasn't driving.)
Now there were likely 30 people who could have easily grasped the situation and worked out what needed to be done. Instead the running around like chickens was amazing. There was no extinguisher handy, the next condo village security ran out with a hose - about 500 meters too short. It was like the politics here. All the frenetic activity and nothing of meaning going on. The innate ability here to miss the point every single time time must be ingrained in the cultural/societal structure.
The fire had consumed the engine by the time the emerg vehicle got in place, but they had an extinguisher and it was quickly put out. A new Lexus is now a barbecued Lexus. No one hurt, nothing too dramatic. I hiked up my skirt, picked up my groceries and finished my walk home.
All in a day.