The panic before the storm

What it’s really like when your city gets evacuate.

Having lived in Charleston for year now, I’m finally exposed to hurricanes and the natural disasters involving the coast. Last year hurricane Matthew sent me packing and headed for home. College of Charleston ended up letting us off school for around 5 days. Except this year I’m actually scared. Category 5 hurricane Irma is headed to my home, and of course my school and city have been evacuated.

I have to panic to find a flight, ride or safe space for the next 5 days at least. When you live 22 hours away, it’s not always easy to last minute plan for these kind of events. Plane ticket prices sky rocket and people start driving to Colombia/Greenville the second they hear word of a day off school. For my fellow out of staters, you learn to appreciate the kindness your friends show you in this time of stress.

As fun as it is to talk about getting school off and all the things I get to do instead of going to class, in reality everything I own is now in danger of being completely destroyed. Mankind is still so vulnerable in the face of natural disasters. There’s nothing that I can say or do that will make the unknown feel any less uncomfortable. And I’m watching islands be destroyed, knowing that this is what could come next. Or it could be absolutely nothing. Life’s weird.

In preparation for the storm, my room looks like I’ve moved out. Everything is boxed up and on high ground. My walls are bare and and everything is pushed to the middle of the room away from the windows. Lots of towels that I’m relying on saving me a few bucks in case of flooding.

You eat everything in your fridge while you still can. I refused to let myself eat out knowing that I have at least $50 worth of groceries (I’m in college so that’s a lot) that are most definitely going to go bad this week, or if the power goes out. It’s a great excuse to stuff your face and not regret it.

It’s a mad dash for any gas or sand bags left on the peninsula. You’d never think a place could run out of gas, until the line is 15 cars long and they tell you they’re out. Then it gets real.

The airport is a freaking reunion. Everyone and their mom are peacing tf out. Oh and there are so many animals, which makes my travel experience a lot more exciting. I saw a family with 2 dogs and 4 birds. I feel bad for whoever is on a flight with them, but hey you gotta do what you gotta do.

Stay safe fellow east coasters!


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