Monday, August 29, 2011

Hurricane Irene - Gone

Irene was my first hurricane experience and I didn't really know what to expect. I am always prepared with extra food and everything; kinda glad my parents always taught me that. Aside from that, I live in a temporary place - it's not my real home and I don't have a lot of things to take care about other than important documents and myself.

On Friday, I went to Wegmans to buy bottled water as recommended by any hurricane-related emergency prep websites. They were out of stock. I have about 9 bottles of water that I previously bought, so I wasn't too worried getting home empty handed.

Canned soup, snacks... everything's stocked up before there was any news of the hurricane too.

Friday morning, I saw fog covering the sky. It was rather scary and I thought it was bad enough for a prelude. According to forecast, the hurricane was supposed to come at around 4 a.m. on Sunday.

Rain and strong wind arrived at about 9 pm. Considering I live more than 5 floors above the ground, I couldn't hear any loud rustling noise of the trees. I wouldn't even notice that Irene had come if my friend didn't text me.

Just as a precaution, I set an alarm at 2 a.m. and 4 a.m. on Sunday in case if there were evacuation or some sort I could still save myself. Would be a little funny yet tragic if I missed the evacuation just because I fell asleep, right?

My brother called me around 3 a.m. to check on me. I was half asleep. And I guess I still couldn't hear anything at all. I told him that I'm perfectly fine and I don't think anything bad is happening.

The thunderstorms we had weeks before the hurricane was way scarier than this.

Of course, I wouldn't blame anyone (including the media) for making things hyped up - safety comes first. It's better to be safe and sorry, and as an Indonesian proverb that I had memorized by heart by now says
Sedia payung sebelum hujan
 which literally means prepare/bring an umbrella before it rains. Always be prepared in any kind of situation.

Even then, I still think that people really need to heed to warnings. When I read the news about the people who died this time, there was a surfer who went surfing as the hurricane came and another person died while driving because a tree fell on the car. I'm really sorry for them and their families, but I can't think why would people go outside when clearly there is a hurricane warning. You know. It's not like we have to evacuate to Europe for the hurricane. Just stay indoors.


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