The other night, I sat relaxing in my big comfy chair, chatting with Andrew online. Eleanor was asleep on my lap; I had the blinds pulled up and let the soft city lights warm my apartment. It was blissful. Of course, it was all interrupted when the fire alarm went off in my apartment building. I jumped up and began trying to get Eleanor into a copy paper box (she did not cooperate and I have a nice gash on my pinky to show for it), thinking "Oh my god, Gina! The building is going to implode and you don't have a plan." It was quite dramatic. I ended up leaving my apartment with just my keys and my iPhone. I had to leave Eleanor behind, which is another blog post of failed-mothering in itself. I sat on the corner of my block, wearing flip flops and crying on the phone to Andrew and my Mom that I was worried about Eleanor. It was not blissful.
Once I got back into the apartment (after about 20 mins, it was a system malfunction* - thank goodness), Eleanor and I cuddled and reconciled (GC: You must get in the box!!! ER:*licks Gina's chin* meow.) and I started to plan for my "go bag." I would not be caught off guard again.
While gathering supplies and ideas for how to prepare for an emergency, I came across this awesome collection of photographs at Lifehacker that show the contents of people's go bags. They seem to use "go bag" to refer to what I'd call a regular "bag bag." Sigh, my bag bag. My bag bag is like a security blanket to me. It's also an over-sized, overstuffed, unorganized mess that I throw over my shoulder and walk like one leg is shorter than the other because of. Here's what's in my bag bag (which is a great canvas bag I got on sale from J.Crew):
1. iPhone - holds everything, my music, my notes, shopping lists, calendars, books (kindle and audible audiobooks), let's me access my email, surf the web, and yeah, it does everything.
3. wallet - seriously weeded through recently to remove everything but essential plastic and (occasionally) cash
4. ibuprofen - sometimes I get headaches =(
5. hand sanitizer - sometimes I get germaphobic =)
6. random receipts
7. extra iphone charger - this is a recent addition, I only bought the second charger because I left mine in NJ.
8. hand lotion - this used to come in handy a lot more when I drove, I hated to see dry skin on my hands and I found myself looking at my hands at red lights.
9. a packet of Starbucks VIA, held in my VIA wallet - Yeah, I'm not kidding when I say I love this stuff.
10. bobby pins - left from when I had curly hair and would need to tame it every day.
11. sunglasses - I wear them at night.
12. gum - I like spearmint
13. coupons for Starbucks ice cream - been meaning to pick this up! $1.00 off!
14. lanyard with keys and school ID - I've been meaning to sew my own snazzy lanyard but for now I'm using one from the iSchool, school spirit!
15. water bottle - I got this one for $9.99 at Kitchen Kapers, it comes with a carabiner that I use to latch it onto my bag.
16. a spork - can't tell you how handy this is
17. an umbrella my dad got for me from Japan (or China, I can't remember)
18. a mirror, because I'm obsessed with myself
19. a coupon for 10% off at a local psychic named Gina, I found this in the stacks when I was cleaning. Bizarre.
20. Burt's Bees chapstick
Yeah, my bag bag holds all that important stuff that I just casually left in the apartment during the evacuation. But to be fair, I was too upset about leaving Eleanor to think about bringing anything else. Next time, I will bring Eleanor's new crate, her pet emergency bag, my bag bag and my go bag. Yes, I will be a bag lady during a fire drill. But I won't leave that kitty again!
Get in the bag El!
*They posted a sign the next day that said the alarm went off because the battery was low in one of the smoke detectors. Seriously?!