Sometimes on the way to your dream,

you get lost and find a better one.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Rabbit Year.....or not

I had a post in mind for today.
I planned on rabbiting on about how we are now in the Year of the Rabbit.
I planned on googling Year of the Rabbit, finding out what's good and bad about being a Rabbit, what Rabbits can expect in their year.

But here's a change of plan.

Last night I spent quite a bit of time text messaging with my niece.
About cyclone Yasi.

My niece, G, was worried about her mum, (also a G), who lives in Tully, QLD.
In the direct path of the cyclone.

Oh boy!!

I didn't know G's mum very well, she was my brother's girlfriend briefly way back when. Maybe a bit longer than briefly, I don't really remember.
(I suck at keeping in touch.)

Anyway, G sent me a message saying her mum was in danger there, and by tomorrow, (which is now today), her mum could be dead and that thought was scary.
I asked could she not leave? and G said it was already too late. Her mum was huddled up in her bathroom in her tiny little house until the storm was over.
At that point I said I'm not a praying person, but I'll send one up.

Early this morning, about 4am, I had a new message from G saying the worst of the storm had passed and her mum is okay.

Then I went back to sleep.

But earlier last night and most of today, I got to thinking about going or staying, if such a disaster were to come our way, down here in Adelaide.

If Ihad enough warning that a cyclone was approaching, I would definitely get out of harm's way.
Depending on how much warning I had, I'd pack up everything I possibly could and head on out, to Port Pirie where my sister lives. She wouldn't be happy to see me, but the town has a cheap motel.
If I had less warning, I'd pack up what was most important to me, and get out of harm's way.

I don't see myself staying, just because all my things are here. If there's any chance at all that I could be killed by staying, then it's my choice to leave. As quickly as possible. Even if it's only to an evacuee centre set up by whoever does those things.

So now I'm wondering, just how much warning did these people get?

A paragraph in today's paper said the staff at a Dunk Island Resort had a week's warning and apparently were not given the option of leaving. Not Given The Option!!
Guests were flown to safety, but staff did not get the same option.
That seems wrong to me.

If the resort had fair warning, then I'd think the residents of the rest of QLD did too.
Now, QLD has survived quite a few cyclones, it's a tropical area, cyclones are part of the weather pattern, you build accordingly and hope for the best. But most of the cyclones fall into category one or two, by my understanding.

Yasi, on the other hand was listed as category five. FIVE!! That's one heck of a storm.
Something like that coming my way? I'd get out of there.

In a completely different situation, for instance if that cyclone hit very suddenly, out of nowhere, with no warning, I'd be thinking differently of course. I'd be packing all my most important treasures into suitcases and stashing them in the safest room in the house. Along with myself of course. I've no idea what room that is, but I'm sure people in charge would let others know.
Probably the built in wardrobe in my room. Empty it of clothes and stash myself and my treasures in there.

I discussed most of this with my daughter K, in between texts from G, and she agreed that, given fair warning, the sensible thing to do is leave. Stay alive.

I can understand people loving their homes and all their things, I love all my things too, but given a choice between living or possibly dying, I'll choose to live. Because I can always start over.

Somewhere else.


  1. Great choice. I'd choose life over my house any day. I've had to think about more having lived in the Adelaide Hills for the past five years. That threat of fire grows each summer and we have a box of stuff we love in readiness to pick up and go. Great post.

    Trying to swing by/follow blogs before the AusBlogCon. Pop by and visit bigwords if you get a chance x

  2. A pre-packed 'bolt box' in the 'danger' season of wherever you live means all you have to do is pick it up and run.

    Bizarre how preparation for flood and fire is similar ...

  3. bigwords is; welcome to drifting. One of my children lives in the Adelaide hills with her family and every time there's threat of a fire important papers and stuff are packed up and moved to her Mum-in-laws house.

    Red Nomad OZ; a prepacked box is a great idea. I'm thinking of using a backpack a bit bigger than my usual handbag size and putting things in it like my external hard drive, family tree album, stuff like that. Plus a couple of changes of clothes and some toiletries. When or if the time comes to run for it, I'll add my laptop with all connections, my ipod and my diary, then I'm all set. Probably not much need for such a bag here in Adelaide, but you never know.

  4. Life is more precious than material objects that can be replaced, i'd be off like a shot should a cyclone or bush fire threaten :-).

  5. I'd leave too. If the car held Love Chunks, Sapphire, Milly and a couple of photo albums I'd be happy.

    Thank god the cyclone didn't kill anybody and that really the towns and goverment and volunteers were super organised. If anything, it's the media who are disappointed that it wasn't as 'catastrophic' and newsworthy as they hoped!

  6. Hello,
    I'm dropping in on Red Nomad Oz's recommendation. Already I had to look up something. I lived in Florida for 25 years and we saw many huricanes every season. I wanted to know if there was a difference between cyclones and hurricanes. None... Hurricanes just originate in the Northern Hemisphere. I always kept my survival kit ready in case I stayed and my "take with kit" in case I left. I no longer live with hurricanes but live in Montana where we frequent little earth tremors. That can be spooky too. Oh well.....
    I enjoyed your blog. I'll visit again.
    Love and peace
    Wanna buy a duck

  7. Windsmoke; Life is one thing that can't be replaced. And old photographs, that's why I've scanned all my old family photos from way back when, into my computer and from there onto the external hard drive. I'm also going to put them ona disc, especially the family tree pages.

    Kath; don't forget the laptop. I'm glad people didn't die too, didn't pay much attention to how the media were reacting.

    Manzanita; welcome to drifting. I used to think hurricanes and cyclones were different too. I don't live in a cyclone or flood area so I've never bothered to keep a "run for it" bag ready. But the way Mother Nature is carrying on, I think it's better to be prepared. I'll hop on over to your blog for a look see.

  8. My Aunty lives in El Arish. They thought it was heading more towards Cairns so didn't panic as they have gone through many cyclones. When they knew it was heading direct for them and Cat 5 it was too late to get going somewhere else. The winds were already dangerous on those tight rainforest roads, the shelters in Innisfail were full very early on; there was no real shelter in Tully and Mission Beach was evacuated so a no go zone.

    Instead she took in people who came from Mission Beach and had no where else to go.

    I cried all night certain she was going to die. She is not a praying woman.., she is not religious..she's a tough QLDer froma sugar cane farming family.. but she said "pray for us, that we get through this". She was real scared.

    At 4am I got a text saying it was now cat 4 and they had survived, but she had been terrified and will never ever stay again. The door was blowing at one stage and they put all their weight on it to prevent it flying away, she was sure they were going to die. But they survived and their home only has broken windows and other minor damage. Some-ones roof is sitting in her backyard, near her verandah.. a very close call of smashing her wooden home to pieces.

    And the cyclone season is not over yet. I'm in Darwin and I will be updating my cyclone kit.