The closest I have ever been to the terror of conflagration was in Corsica in the 1980s. The fires on that island were usually inland. The mountains, taller than Mallorca’s, posed great challenges to firefighters. The pilots of the Canadair planes were treated as heroes. Not all of them came back. Hidden by smoke, the biggest danger was from unseen cables. But the fires could reach the coast, as they did one night in Propriano.