Wednesday, August 24, 2011

a funny thing happened on the way to the hurricane...

So yesterday afternoon we were looking on the computer at the weather... because you know, we live on a boat and weather is something we like to pay close attention to, even when we're just hanging out in the slip waiting for rigging.
And my geographically inclined child pointed out the obvious... "Hey mom, that hurricane is coming to the Chesapeake Bay!" Oh, yes. Why hello there Irene, how sporting of you to plan a visit up our way. If you please, don't come to close because evacuating with a baby is a real P.I.T.A.
So we did the prudent thing. We started making long term plans... just in case. Clear the decks and cockpit. Toys off the dock now, just to get it done. And of course go buy groceries and batteries and such now before she comes any closer and the stores get all crazy like.

But we were unable to avoid crazy. Because my friends there is nothing crazier than living on the mid-Atlantic seaboard and feeling a 6.0 earthquake. It was a first for everyone in my family. We were in the underground parking lot at Whole Foods getting ready to hop out and shop. I was sorting through which of our grocery bags was the least disgusting to bring in and use while Zach declared that he would handle unbuckling Naia and getting her out of her seat (oy).

Then the shaking. I took a mama bear deep breath and did what any mama would do. I blamed the earthquake on my son. Without even looking up from my moldy bag sorting I hollared, "Be gentle with your sister! Stop monekying around back there!"

Then I realized, that shake was not from a monkey, more like a gorilla. Was a friend playing a joke? We almost always run into a friend at "Whole Check" so I thought maybe somebody was jumping on my back bumper to be funny. A quick check in the rearview mirror... nope. So being a jaded Washingtonian my next thought was, "Oh crap. Another terrorist attack. Well at least we'll be trapped somewhere with lots of good food."

No, too rhythmic for terrorists. Then I hopped out and saw the looks on the faces of everyone else in the parking lot. Could it be? Was that just? It was!

Radio on, phone the hubby, and drive out of that underground lot as fast as we safely could. People on the streets looking totally bewildered. I know my West Coast buddies think this is all funny for a wee little 6.0-er. But we're all earthquake virgins here. And our buildings are most definitely NOT set up for this. And for many of my friends it was their kids first day at school. So life here got a little chaotic. The National Cathedral lost some spires. The Washington Monument looks like the Leaning Tower of Pisa. We're just not set up for this. We drove around in circles for about 20 minutes wondering what to do. And the decision was made. Buy our hurricane food at Trader Joes instead ;) They are above ground afterall.

So if things are a little quiet here this week it's because we're getting ready for that blizzard. Or ducking a tornado. Or that toads are falling from the sky.
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