Six in the Morning: Water preparedness, complex issues persist after storm

Fawn Musick

Watching all the news this past week focusing on Hurricane Florence and the destruction that can happen in a hurry, makes one want to sit up and take notice. First my heart goes out to all of those who lost loved ones because of the hurricane. Secondly, a huge thank you goes out to all rescue workers, utility workers, first-responders and anyone who reached out a helping hand to their neighbor. Sometimes, we are at our best when horrible things happen.

We didn’t have any damage where we live, other than a few branches and loads of rain, but the threat was lurking in the background, so we prepared. I bought water, water, and more water, tied down things in the backyard and went to work as usual. I fretted about and set several five-gallon buckets to gather all the rainwater that I could, so I could still go to the indoor potty if the power went out.

On Sunday morning, we woke to NO power, and I was so relieved that I had gathered and prepared. In fact, I might have been a little puffy and proud about it because no one else thought the threat was that real and did not encourage me in my water preparedness schemes. So, we woke up and no power, but we had gallons of water to flush – if we needed to.

The youngest was horrified that he could not play his games and sulked around the house a bit, and we offered to play card games or board games or to sit and read a book. His eyes are probably still a bit tender from all of the eye-rolling he did during the power outage. Finally, we decided to drive over to the office to see if there was any power.

There was power at the office, which I thought was strange. I need help setting up some tables and moving things around, so we did that and used the bathroom while there. On the way home, the traffic lights blinked back on as we drove through them. The stores blinked on, and by the time we got home, we had power again. Turns out, there had been some kind of car wreck, which knocked out a power pole and our power loss had nothing to do with the impending storm.

As we ate lunch, we talked about the storm and how crazy it was that we lost power because of a totally different reason. Hubby brought up a good point about mandatory evacuations. He asked, “If a person is told to evacuate and then doesn’t, is he/she breaking the law? What if rescue workers are sent in the get them? Then is he/she breaking the law? What if someone dies after being told to leave, should there be charges brought against them?”

We mulled it over and couldn’t come up with answers or solutions and decided that a lot of grace had to be given during stressful times. Then, we discussed what we would pack and take if we were told we had to evacuate. We talked over different scenarios and different ideas of what we would need to continue our lives. The discussion got pretty spicy at times because the gaming consoles and controllers did NOT make the list, nor did the chickens.

After our discussion, and folks drifted back to the things they like to do when there is power in the house, I was thankful that we had been without for a few hours. We all ended up in the same room for a few hours with no cell phones, no TV, and no games. We worked together at the office to get some things ready for next week. We had some interesting discussions about life and dealing with complex issues.

College-age girlie learned a few different lessons. She chose to stay at her university rather than come home. Classes were canceled, so there were a few hurricane parties, but the rain and roads got so bad, a curfew was put in place for the county. They had power but could not get out, and with no classes, there was nothing to do. She called and reported that they had all finished every bit of homework, and watched everything on Netflix, and that they were all so, so, so ready for classes to begin again! Hmmm…

Florence is over, but the consequences of Florence will remain with us for a while. In fact, we are having a Florence water party on Saturday. We are going to remove FULL five-gallon water buckets from the deck. Twenty of them.

Hey, I wanted to be prepared.

Fawn Musick is a Princeton Times columnist, a mom, and a blogger. To read more of her work, visit fawn.musick.com. To contact her, write fawnmusick@yahoo.com