Your lights are out, the Wi-Fi is out and the silence is overwhelming, but you’re starving. What do you do? Or what should you have done? Hurricane Irma barreled by last week and showed the Southeastern region of the United States what the essentials are in a natural disaster. The local Walmart, Dollar General, Target and Dollar Trees were covered with residents looking for essentials.
Here are some of those essentials:
Water. As humans, we all know that water is one of the main things we thrive off of. Days before the hurricane was supposed to hit Valdosta, we were able to see moms, dads, grandmas and aunts alike looking for cases of water. Water is essential in a weather crisis because you’ll never know if your water supply will temporarily be shut off. That doesn’t mean go into a “water rivalry” to see who can collect the most cases of water. Residents should be reasonable, so others can get prepared as well.
When it comes to food, the best option would be to buy items that can be eaten without using electricity. Food such as peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, tuna fish and other non-perishable goods. Some of the things I ate during Hurricane Irma was applesauce, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and chips. Yes, most, if not all, of the options fit into the junk food category, but you do what you have to do to survive.
Lighting is another necessity that we need as humans. Flashlights were also ransacked during the hurricane fright. Most stores around Valdosta had sold out. If you cannot find a flashlight, candles are another great option. Be very careful with candles, though. Be sure to blow out the candle before bed because you could potentially start a house fire.
Evacuations are also not uncommon when life-threatening weather is imminent. In the case of evacuation, you should always pack a bag. Fill it with necessary items and items for entertainment purposes such as clothes, a flashlight with batteries, some water, food, your phone and charger and a form of personal identification (I.D.). All of these items can make the evacuation process easier in the case of an emergency.
Of course, while your electricity is out, the situation of boredom comes into play. Although you might be patient in waiting for your electricity to come back on, the process of waiting may be the most agonizing part. For entertainment purposes, my family plays board games and tells old family stories during storms. My granddad has a battery-operated television/radio and depending on how bad the storm is, my family will have a little dance party. My family always has intentions of trying to ease everybody’s mind when a weather crisis is going on.
If you need to charge your electronic devices, you can always go to your local businesses that may have power and charge your devices (i.e. Starbucks, Waffle House, etc.).
If you’re not with your family, you can also do some things by yourself that can pass the time. Activities such as reading, painting and dare I say doing some homework could take your mind off of the electricity issues. Also, just looking at the rain and the gloomy weather could be relaxing as well. If you haven’t been able to get your sleeping pattern in order, you could sleep the wait away as well. Some of my friends tend to brush up on their photography while in the midst of bad weather. A hurricane or storm is a perfect time to brush up on your hobby or pick up another one. There are multiple ways to find entertainment without Wi-Fi.
Hurricanes and storms are unfortunate and scary events that could alter your life. By being proactive, citizens can prepare themselves for the situation verses being more reliant on the “what-ifs”. Follow the safety procedures and precautions that your governor/city officials set. They want the people in their state/county to be safe. With that in mind, pick your snacks wisely, grab some water and be prepared.
Story by Jacorey Moon, Staff Writer.
Photo by Seth Willard, Photo Editor.
For more Campus Life stories, click here.