How Could I Forget?

A police siren?  A firetruck?  An ambulance?  No, it’s lasting too long.

Oh.  My.  Gosh.

An air raid siren.

I thought we were past this.

Oh.  My.  Gosh.

Oh.  My.  Gosh.

We have a minute and a half, I tell myself.  A minute and a half, and you’ve only lost ten seconds of that, even if it feels like a lot more.

I find my phone and my shoes.  I put on my shoes.  Shlomo takes one of his shoes and hands it to me.  He thinks we’re going.  We are.  He doesn’t know where.

I don’t have a key; Jack took it by mistake when he left.  I will have to get a copy later today.

I take Shlomo, his shoes, and my cell phone.  I put the top lock in the door, and close the door as much as it will close with the top lock in the way.

I go down the the shelter, calling Yitzchak while I go.  The call doesn’t go through.

I walk down to the shelter.  Don’t worry, I tell myself.   It’ll fall in Gush Etzion.  The Arabs have horrible aim.

The shelter is open.  I walk in, and look in disbelief at the other three people there.  Why are there so few people?  And what under the sun . . .?

It’s a drill, they tell me.

Oh.  My.  Gosh.

Of course it’s a drill.  I read about this two days ago.  I knew that they would be doing a drill today, Thursday, between ten and twelve.  And, they always do drills on Thursdays (not true, but I wasn’t remembering correctly at the time), though, admittedly, around eleven o’clock instead of “between ten and twelve”.

How could I have forgotten?  I told the other people.  Of course, it was on the news, and I just plumb forgot.

We can go now, they say.  No, says one of them.  We need to stay fifteen minutes.

No, I say.  Only ten minutes – that’s what the Home Front Command says.

I sit down and put Shlomo’s shoes on his feet.

The feeling of stupidity has not yet surfaced.  I am too tense.  It was too real.  Too scary.  And didn’t they do all the previous drills with just a flat note, instead of up and down?  Why was this one different?

I know why it was different.  They wanted it to be a real simulation, so that it would be taken more seriously.  Or maybe this is how they always did the drills, and I just never paid attention, because I knew they were drills.

We leave the shelter, and walk back to our respective places.

I am still shaken.  It was too real.

I call Yitzchak.  He knew it was a drill, and was trying to call me, to remind me that it was a drill.

Too late, I guess.

But Oh.  My.  Gosh.

That was scary.

I hope it’s the last time that I’ll have to hear that siren.

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7 thoughts on “How Could I Forget?

  1. Pingback: yay award time! | littlepoppits

  2. Pingback: Alert: The Benefit Of Wasting Time | Little Duckies

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