ms. fresh fish

Housewife Chronicles: Emergency Preparedness
October 31, 2012, 10:16 am
Filed under: babies, events, Housewife Chronicles, ottawa

I was late on the Hurricane Sandy awareness train, after having been distracted by renovations, visiting in-laws and day-to-day chaos. When I did finally get my head out of the proverbial sand, I found out that Ottawa was in her path. My first thought: Ooooh! Power outage! I love power outages! So fun! And then I remembered that I now have children (they were napping). Sh*t.

The joyful anticipation soon gave way to machinations of an emergency preparedness robot. I had to get on this. I had to think about what we would need, to plan, to prepare. None of these are things I ever enjoy doing.

In January 1998, eastern Ontario and Quebec (among other places, I’m sure) went through the Ice Storm. It was brutal. Freezing cold temperatures, power outages for days to weeks, roads and sidewalks were actual skating rinks – completely impassable by foot and sometimes car. Neighbours and families huddled together around fireplaces to share body warmth and morale. That said, I was in my first year of University and I would classify my personal experience as a mild adventure. But I had no children. Just me and a slightly traumatized best friend (a story for another time).

Getting prepared, it occurred to me, was a job for me as Housewife. I wouldn’t be able to blame Le Husband for not doing it. This was on me. The pressure!

My first concern was food. What would they eat? I developed a mental menu plan of things that wouldn’t require preparation (bread, peanut butter, fruit, squish’em food packs, cereal, jarred food).  What would they drink? Milk could become a non-option, so self-pat on the back for keeping an emergency can of formula around and not using up every last spoon before transitioning them to milk. I filled up all of the water bottles and pitchers I have with water. Done.

Secondly, light. I had enough trouble gathering the flashlight, candles and matches in daylight without being in a panic, that I was thankful that I didn’t have to do it in the dark, in a panic. I assembled them all and placed them in a shoe box that I was keeping because I’m a pack-rat. (Double-Win: I get to show Le Husband that my keeping everything is USEFUL, and it fit everything perfectly and was easily stowed in the front closet.)

Everything else, I figured, we could go with the flow (which would be made easy by my control-freakish need to organize my babies’ gear).

Alas, Sandy is rolling through Ottawa today and it seems she left most of her fury on New York, New Jersey and Connecticut’s doorstep. All we’ve got is some light wind and heavy drizzle. Was the planning for naught? Nope. Because now I can go back to giddy anticipation of an eventual power outage knowing that my wee ones will be fine.


2 Comments so far
Leave a comment

I kinda feel bad that sandy was a non-event since you did all that awesome planning. Nice job!

Comment by Marianna Annadanna

I used the bottled water today to make coffee while our hot water tank was being replaced!! Yay!

Comment by freshfish

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