Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Emergency Preparedness

I know, *EVERYBODY* and their small dog is harping about preparedness, thanks to the Gap Fire! (Thank you, Santa Barbara Independent, for this STUNNING photo!!!)

Sometimes, it takes a real emergency to get our attention and focus us on what really matters. So, I hope you will bear with me as I reminisce for a moment.

As I sat here alone last Wednesday, waiting for Derrin to return from Florida, and watching the flames creep ever closer, I began considering what I would grab should I have to evacuate - - - a very real possibility.

Of course, living creatures first, and I thanked God that all I had to worry about THIS time around was cats; with the Painted Cave fire, we had small children as well.

Then, grab the computers!! If we lose them, we're sunk.

After that, it used to be a toss-up: do we grab all the handwork I have spent my life creating, or do we first grab the family history and journals? With several people at home, that's not an issue, because everyone can be sent to collect some of each. When it's just me . . . .

And then I realized that things are different now than they were 20 years ago.

I have spent the last 20 years (well, 15 at least!) transferring all our genealogical data to . . . COMPUTER!!!! Including scanning in all the proof documents and precious family photos I could get my hands on.

I'd *rather* have the originals. But, as long as I had the computers, I had the genealogy. And all the pictures of Baby Hyrum. And a good piece of our music collection.

As an added bonus, when Derrin got home he reminded me that we also had off-site backup for everything. So, should the worst happen, (which, Praise God, it didn't!) our most important files are being preserved elsewhere.

What a wonderful day we live in! Computers allow us to access information of all kinds at the touch of a button (or click of a mouse); the gospel has been restored to give purpose and meaning to our lives and to allow us the opportunity to bless our kindred dead; with cell phones and blackberries we can keep in touch with worried relatives, wherever they may be, and get virtually instantaneous fire updates to keep ourselves and our loved ones safe.

Now, as the fire moves away from us, let us not forgot to offer prayers of thanks as earnest as were our prayers for protection last week. And let us remember to GET that "Emergency Evacuation Closet" (that we TALKED about 20 years ago - - - with the list of "What to Grab First" on the door) FINALLY pulled together, so we won't have to go running around the house grabbing stuff next time we have an emergency. And, let's make it a higher priority to get the rest of our family history digitized, with a copy someplace else, so that if our house burns down while we're out of town, we won't have lost the work of a lifetime.

1 comment:

  1. I showed the top picture, without context, to some people at work and they thought it was one of the most beautiful sunsets they had ever seen. It was a pity to disillusion them.