The fire alarm sounded at our apartment complex yesterday for the fourth time in a little under three weeks. But unlike all those previous instances, this time it didn’t quickly shut off. In fact, it went on and on and on..
I had just stepped out of the shower when it began screeching. After waiting about a minute or two, I reluctantly decided I’d better quickly get dressed, grab my lap top and my purse and leave the building right away; you know.. in case it was for real this time.
The sound of the pulsating buzzers in the hall was absolutely deafening! I covered my ears and joined a few others as we walked down the stairwell and out into the fresh chill of a beautiful North Carolina morning.
Believe it or not, our little group of (mostly female) “evacuees” had a great time in the parking lot as we introduced ourselves and discussed various subjects like whether or not curling irons have actually ever burned down a building. The consensus was “no” and yet we all admitted we were totally paranoid about leaving them on by accident and causing a devastating conflagration.
We marveled at how quickly the fire trucks arrived and how few of our fellow residents chose to vacate this huge apartment complex. I guess they figured it was just another false alarm, which in the end, proved to be right.
But what if they had been wrong?
I thought about life’s other warnings that we so often choose to ignore…alerts about the weather, a check engine light in the car, that little leak under the sink, the stomach ache that won’t go away, that kid posting threatening messages on the internet..
A super hot (pun intended) fire fighter eventually signaled our group to let us know all was clear. Unlike the picture below, our hero was unfortunately dressed in full gear so we were left to imagine how he might have looked in the calendar..
After a few whispered jokes about some of us needing mouth to mouth or chest compressions from this hunk to help us recover from the stress of the morning’s inconvenience, we said our goodbyes and went back to our apartment units. Working fast to make up for lost time, I did my hair, slapped on my make-up and sprinted out the door to run my errands. Half way to the parking garage I stopped, frozen in my tracks..
“Oh no!! Did I unplug my…”