You have 2 minutes to evacuate your home — What do you grab? (Opinion)
For most people this would be a theoretical question. Some emergency happens; fire, flood or something else. Authorities give you 120 seconds to be out that door leaving everything behind but what you can carry.
This actually happened to a 77-yr-old woman in Upper Freehold Township Friday morning. Barbara Fox-Cooper told NJ.com she heard what sounded like a cracker crumbling in her basement. Her and a neighbor determined her foundation was crumbling and it seemed to be the result of nearby drilling for a natural gas pipeline project. Authorities ended up standing in her doorway giving her literally only two minutes to grab what she could then get out.
What did she take? She was practical about it. Barbara grabbed her laptop, personal documents, prescription meds, some clothes and some toiletries. That's it.
If this were me, I know what I SHOULD do. I should grab birth certificates and hard to replace documents and just get out. Yet it would haunt me to leave behind the only things I saved of my father; his baseball glove and a small coal miner statue. It would also kill me to not grab the books of printed pics of all the kids, and the box of silly arts and crafts Jack and Mina made when they were little. The most precious of all that is a laminated 1st grade project Jack made in which he had to write who his hero was and why. Where most kids were writing famous athletes or other people of note, he simply wrote "my daddy, because he keeps us safe and happy."
We should all probably keep certain things in a very contained area to grab and go just in case something happens, kind of like you do in a woman's last two months of pregnancy when that hospital bag is prepacked. But we humans seem to be optimists by nature and we never think these things will happen to us.
The irony in the case of what happened to Barbara Fox-Cooper is that she was among a number of homeowners who have been opposed to the pipeline project for some time. You can bet this will ratchet up the anger among homeowners, local governments and environmentalists who have been opposed to it all along.
The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Jeff Deminski. Any opinions expressed are Jeff Deminski's own.