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It’s no secret that the recent Boulder flood affected many people in different ways. Some, like me, were fortunate enough to evade evacuation. Yet, I wondered if I had been evacuated, which belongings would I have grabbed on my way out the door? I asked students and recent graduates who faced evacuation what they found too precious to leave behind. I found that most people took at least one sentimental object with them they wouldn’t want to lose.
“When I was leaving the night of, I just put my sentimental stuff up high, but since then I’ve taken sentimental stuff — mostly cards — out of my apartment and put them in my car,” recent graduate and media studies major Jessica Ryan said. She said the cards were “from family members, mostly – I lost my great grandma earlier this year so I made sure to keep the card she handmade me for my birthday in January safe.”
“We were pretty rushed out, so I didn’t have a whole lot of time to think about what I was going to take with me,” junior psychology and business major Lauren Cortellessa said. Along with clothes and her school bag, she took her computer, which was one of her top priorities since it had many photos and all of her school work on it.
While many of us think we would be prepared to be evacuated or move to higher ground instantly, it’s not always easy to think about all of the important things to take with us while we’re in a panic.
Junior history major Brianna Guerrero said she helped her roommate move all of her stuff to the third floor of the house quickly because she was so panicked. She said the flood water was coming into the basement and soaking the carpet so fast that their focus was ripping out the carpet in the basement to keep it from molding.
After the interviews, I started thinking about what I would have grabbed from my apartment had I been evacuated. Would I have been able to think through the panic and take my sentimental, important items, or would I have been thinking about the basics like expensive electronics? I never thought I’d be in that situation, but with the recent flood, it became more of a reality when I wasn’t sure if I would have to leave my house behind or not. I truly believe I would have grabbed some clothes, my school work, my computer (which also includes many memorable photos) and a few photos I keep of my family and friends on my bookshelf.
Even if you weren’t evacuated due to the flood and have never been in that situation, take the time think about what you would take with you and save from a natural disaster. Maybe it will help to prepare you more for the possibility. Nevertheless, it is interesting to consider.
Contact CU Independent Staff Writer Shanae Johnson at firstname.lastname@example.org.