Of course it was in the pitch black of night and the big storm was just starting to ebb. Of course we were already asleep when the phone jarred us awake. I would like to say it was the Department of Public Safety calling my husband to get to the Senior Center to take care of evacuating the senior citizens because of a tsunami alert, but it was a nosy neighbor alerting us. There was not even an official alert yet.
As my husband swiftly left, he called back for me to see if I could find out anything on the computer or the news so that I could decide to wake up my mom, or not. Imagine my surprise when CNN was reporting a coastal tsunami warning for coastal Alaska and part of the west coast of the United States and Hawaii because of an 8.2 earthquake in the Gulf of Alaska. So I dressed, and gingerly called my 88 year old mother. Who wants to wake up an 88 year old at 1:45 in the morning? I already nixed the idea of pounding on the door, or simply unlocking the door and waking her up in her own house. But the wake up call was necessary since a tsunami siren sits right next to her house and I did not want that waking her up. She was calm, cool, and collected to my “Just me.”, and my ensuing explanation brought a sigh. I said I would keep her informed, but she should get dressed, get her meds together, and wait for me to call….and to expect sirens.
When the sirens started and the police cars started their patterned sweep through the streets of town with loud speakers announcing a mandatory evacuation, we warmed up the car, mere feet from the Bering Sea, and took off for higher ground, making sure that we knew where all our family members were heading.
Never have I been so happy that my work day normally starts at 4 PM. No tardiness for me today. Bed at 4:30 AM and slept til 9:30 AM. A good 5 hours; but I still feel hungover. But my grandson’s mother took pity on on him. When she dropped the mail off before she went to work, she said she left him sleeping. She was allowing him to be as tardy to school as he wanted to be today. Oh, to be young again.