Sunday, June 19, 2011

Preparing to Evacuate

We have a huge fire burning near our home called the Monument Fire. So far the fire was too far away to be really worried about it. Last Friday I had a brush with disaster as the field just south of my home caught fire. While it was not related to the Monument Fire, it was started by a bulldozer clearing some nearby land to protect Fort Huachuca. I left for a trip out of town that day. My heart sank as I received news that our home was in danger and the neighborhood had been evacuated. My friend said “Don’t go home Carey, just go to your Mom’s, you will be safe there.” Thankfully the fires were extinguished and several hours later I was able to return home. In those rushed moments I tried to think of specific things to save, the cats, the computer, and some clothes. It seemed like I didn’t own much of anything that couldn’t be replaced and I instructed my husband to take as many pictures as he could. We were really unprepared.
I think about it and wonder, are we ever really prepared for disaster? How many of us have the proper documentation to prove to our insurance companies what we own? I know I am almost there now. Yesterday I tore apart my kitchen and took pictures of everything. Jason thinks I am going overboard, but I don’t care. I don’t want to kick myself later and wished I had done it. We have so much stuff and it is difficult to say how much we really need versus how much we just don’t want to throw away. I then thought maybe a fire would be freeing in a way, able to rid myself of things I never could bring myself to discard voluntarily. I don’t know, there is much I would miss that I can’t save. We don’t have the space for me to pack up my boxes of cookbooks, so I just pick out a few that can’t be replaced and move on. It is funny as you begin to go through things, like the filing cabinet, how much do I really need to keep? I had started to grab files and place them in boxes when I realized, if I did this, I could quickly run out of space. I went through and in the end only ended up with enough to fill half a box.
I have things packed up and ready to go. I know when the order comes we won’t have much time. I keep the cat carrier out because the cats freaked out when Jason brought it in from the garage. I figure it would be easier to get them in it if it is already in the house. I look at the fire coming down the mountain and can see the progress it has made today. If it makes it to the base we would be in real danger. Course, other homes would perish before ours would, guess that is the bonus for not having a great view. I imagine my home inventory will take me another day to finish. Earlier this afternoon I felt a weird anxious feeling. I am better now. It is out of my hands and I have done all I can. I hope and pray my evacuation efforts end up being a waste of time. If not, I know I am prepared.