Tuesday, March 15, 2011

This Day

Driving, pounding rain slashing the windows as if to break them in two. Overflowing gutters spilling onto the steps. Thunder cracking and crashing and wind whipping the trees sideways. Some trees uprooted and power outages everywhere. Creeks flooded and storm drains backed up. This March Tuesday is a day of violent weather. At least violent for here in the Northwest corner of Oregon. Nothing to compare to Japan where there is total devastation from the 8.9 earthquake on Friday and the subsequent tsunami and now the threat of nuclear meltdown.

It is hard to get the images of tragedy out of my head. Seeing such damage at such a distance takes away some of the awfulness but the pictures still haunt me. I have sat on this couch and watched as disasters around the world played out on TV in the last ten years. Nine Eleven, Katrina, the earthquakes in Haiti and Chile, the trapped miners. So much pain and sorrow. So much lost to catastrophe. The earth is not a gentle place. How do people bear the losses?

Looking around my living room I am thinking of what it would mean to lose all of this. My life. All my possessions. The antique furniture from my grandparents, my books, my treasured memories and mementos, all the photographs, Ember’s room and all her toys. What if it was all gone?

I try to think what I would grab to take in the precious fifteen minutes we would be granted before being inundated should such an earthquake strike here. Ember of course. The dogs. Skye if I could catch her. My purse with my ID and credit cards. Our coats. My Disaster Box. My passport & birth certificate, my prescriptions, the emergency $100 bill I keep hidden. My jewelry. My computer. The cedar box with my journals. Or none of that but just the living things. I must save my granddaughter at all costs. That is all that is important.

I need to update my Disaster Box and replenish the food and water. Maybe stock the car with pet food and toilet paper. Thankfully we don’t need diapers anymore. The Red Cross always has warm blankets and hygiene products and food. Don’t bother taking things you can buy later like clothes.

Maybe thinking about it now will help me to remember when the time comes. We need a Family Plan so each of us knows what the rest of us will do, where we will try to go, what route we will take, who will look for who. We should have phone numbers although cell phones might not work.

It’s a bit overwhelming, is it not. Being prepared for the unknown.


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