Do you ever have one of those moments when you realize something for the very first time, something that is probably painfully obvious to everyone else around you and thus, should have been to you too? You feel so confident about something, you don't even pause long enough to think about second guessing yourself, and then out of the blue...WHAM! It hits you that you may in fact be a complete and total retard and all you can really do at that point is utter a very shocked, very defeated, "Oh."
This happened to me the other day. Zack and I were leaving the grocery store when I noticed a magazine rack by the door with stacks of Hurricane Evacuation Route brochures. They were free, so I quickly snatched one up and proceeded to thumb through it while Zack loaded the groceries into the car. As he drove us home, I read aloud to him the lists of emergency supplies that they recommend keeping on hand at all times. "I can tell you right now," I informed him rather earnestly, "you might as well go ahead and get ready; if I hear even a hint of a warning of a hurricane within five hundred miles of Louisiana, I'm gone. I'm packing up and getting out of here so fast you won't know what hit you." I meant it too. I'm no dummy. I can think of approximately six thousand things I'd rather do than wait out a hurricane down here, going days, maybe weeks without electricity (read: A/C) or fresh water.
"And what exactly are you going to do if you've got a job?" Zack asked.
This is where the big DUH moment came in. I'd never even thought about that. In hindsight I guess that I just assumed most people down here felt the same way I do. I truly figured most jobs offer "Hurricane Days" or something like that as an additional benefit. You know, you've got your PTO, your sick days, and your inclement weather days. This makes soooo much sense to me in my head that I'd never even considered for a moment that it wasn't a reality.
So now I have quite a dilemma on my hands. What am I supposed to do if a hurricane really does come? You'd think after what these people went through with Katrina they'd be more gun-shy and ready to flee at the first sign of bad weather; I know I sure would. Heck, I am now and I wasn't even here four years ago. I can't decide if this makes me respect the locals down here more for their resilience and their refusal to let a natural disaster like that get the best of them, or if it makes me think they're complete lunatics because they didn't learn their lesson the first time around. All that aside though, I've given this a lot of thought and I've decided, job or not, I'm getting the heck out of dodge if another hurricane comes.