I have learned so many valuable lessons in the last few days due as a result of Hurricane Ike. All these little extras we take for granted, (that truly ARE extras because there are many people in other countries who do without these things) what happens when they aren't readily available? Living in the land of excess, we aren't accustomed to going without. We want whatever we want, when we want it. That's become very obvious as we watch people fight over the last jug of milk or wait in line for gasoline (and then filled up 10 containers in the back of their truck... I hope they were going to share that with those who weren't able to get out to get gas!). You don't ever think about milk and bread being the latest craze. You don't realize how cushy your life is until you think about toilets that won't flush, boiling water every time you want to drink it, sewage backed up in people's yards, and not being able to flip a switch and have instant light.
And to think, there once was a time when people didn't have running water, electricity, and food stocked in their fridges (because there were no fridges).
You know, I wasn't so much worried about being uncomfortable if our power went out (and yes, it was hot, muggy, and sticky.. so it was uncomfortable when we were at home, hoping the electricity would return). What I was really concerned about was losing all that food we just bought!
We were very fortunate to have running water.. and a gas heater to heat that water so we could take warm baths!
This was actually a great experience for me. I really had a good time bonding with my friends and family while we "huddled" together in my parents' small two-bedroom condo (the first place to have power back!). We put together puzzles, played games, had wonderful chats..... and I wondered, "Why is it that we rarely do stuff like this..... only when it's a holiday or a horrible event!"
Y'know, my children didn't even want to come back home because they were having SO MUCH FUN!
There is a lot of damage around our towns, but I think it's worth the damage, if it unites us in working together, just as three families worked together in that small condo. Surprisingly, it never felt crowded!
I want to thank those of you who have donated. Brandon and I are praying about who, what, and where to spend the money on. If you would like to donate to give a helping hand to those affected by the hurricane, you can do so through PayPal.com. I posted about it in a previous entry. It's much appreciated! (Again, this money is NOT for us, but for those who do not have the finances and need help NOW.. whether it be for things to fix their homes... or replace their groceries. Some people will have plenty of work, but others will be without jobs for a while!)