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An Alaskan Girl’s [irrational] Thoughts On A Southern Storm

Posted Jan 31 2013 7:27am

This Alakan girl does not do good in “bad weather.”

And by bad weather, I mean storms – like thunderstorms and crazy wind….and basically any time the words tornado or hurricane are mentioned I go into a mini panic mode and hide in my bed.

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Seriously, text alerts will be the death of me. At least I learned the difference between a tornado “watch” and a tornado “warning.” I used to think before that it all meant the same: that a tornado was coming to my house and I needed to seek shelter ASAP. (I know, silly Alaskan).

I mean yes, I have withstood 60 below zero (F) and dense ice fog; and I can drive in a blizzard with no problem-o; and I’ve experienced some crazy earthquakes; been flooded into my house for days (we lived on the river growing up); and been temporarily evacuated for a forrest fire – but dammit when it comes to a torrential downpour, house shaking thunder and lightning, I am a gigantic wuss. I know, I know, I knew the risks when I moved to the south.

So for fun, I figured I would share some of my [irrational] thought processes before/during a storm.

Thought 1: WHAT will I do if a tornado is coming?!
(This one isn’t really irrational by the way – but this is extremely rare in the particular area we are in, but it is one of my biggest fears)
We live in a 2nd story (top floor) apartment! Get in the bathtub? go into my walk in closet since it is an interior room with no windows? Google says I can protect myself with a mattress? What.the.eff. who has time for that?

Thought 2: We should probably make an emergency kit.
After a year and a half we are still yet to have a decent one…It includes a weather radio, flashlights, protein bars, dog food, and a bottle of wine.

Thought 3: WHAT if something happens while we are gone and poor Kona is stuck at home alone?
Kona typically does not wear her collar in the house – I take it off when we come in from outside (she likes to be nakey). However, when it is “stormy” weather I will leave it on her in the off chance that something happens and she magically escapes the house (because I figure if in danger, maybe she will be crafty – or grow thumbs – and find a way to escape), that way if someone finds her wandering around they can identify her and call us. Yes, really.

Thought 4: I have anxiety that I will get struck by lightning while walking a few yards to my car.
Not kidding. I sprint. This is the only time I actually take running seriously.

Thought 5: WHAT would happen if we had to save just a few things and leave?
What would I grab? Oh wait, I would grab my momento boxes (with pictures etc), important documents, oh and my new MacBook… and wine., for the road.

**An additional note on this – like I said above, I have actually been in this situation before. When I was a teenager there was a forrest fire coming toward our house (we lived 60 miles out of town) and the fire department told us we may get notice to evacuate in the next few days if they didn’t get it under control. I drove around to school and work with all my “important” belongings packed up in my car in case I got the call and didn’t have time to get home first.

Thought 6: Anything plugged in is going to blow up.
Seriously, if a storm is coming I will hurry up and try to charge all my stuff, phone, laptop, etc and then unplug EVERYTHING because I am worried it would short out/blow up/etc. One of the first really bad, house shaking storms we had when we got here, I unplugged everything and I made Torrance play cards with me because I wouldn’t let him watch TV. (He loves me).

Thought 7: WHAT kind of food can I eat in the house if we lose power for days?
Let’s be honest, this really is one of my first thoughts, since food is always on my mind, but I hate that I can’t use an oven, stove, or microwave if we lose power. Sometimes I like to play a game of what sort of interesting meals could I make out of dry goods in my pantry that I don’t have to cook? (The answer is “nothing great,” if you are wondering). Good thing we have a little propane grill in our camping supplies. God forbid I can’t heat something up.

Luckily, since I have an attention span of a fly, these thoughts fade quickly and they don’t lead to long term anxiety issues. Typically after all of this, I simply just resort to hiding under my blanket with a glass of wine while Torrance laughs at me. So don’t get all worried and suggest I need Xanax or anything. Actually… now that I think of it, maybe Xanax would be a good item for the emergency kit?


  • Is there any weather you are afraid of or really don’t like to deal with? What kind of “bad” weather do you have to deal with where you live?
  • Ever been in a situation where you lost power for days, had to evacuate, took cover form a tornado/hurricane, etc?

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