Sunday, September 25, 2005


I got home around midnight last night, and got on the computer to talk to check my email, etc. I went to bed around 1:30, feeling tired and happy, snuggled into my covers. At around 4:00, I was jolted awake by a loud noise. What was it? Were my roommates home early? Did something go wrong with my alarm clock? I stumbled around the apartment, trying to turn off whatever this loud noise was, because it was probably waking up the whole building. Somehow, I figured out that it was SUPPOSED to wake the whole building, because that's what fire alarms do. While I was still half unconcious, I returned to my bedroom and changed my pants. I don't know why I did that, because I was still very much groggy. I think I may have fallen over in the process; I don't remember. Then I searched for my keys- I looked in my backpack, on the kitchen table, on my dresser, then finally found them on my desk, next to my computer. Duh. I was almost out the door, when I remembered a friend retelling the story of the fire alarm going off in HER building last week, and how it took them an hour to check every room before they could go back inside, and how she was just wearing her pajamas, and nearly froze to death. So I lunged drunkenly back into my room and grabbed my sweatshirt, then high-tailed it out of there. I was probably one of the first twenty to get outside, since I'm only on the second floor, and the stairs are right next to my apartment. We stood outside for probably twenty minutes, feeling tired and cold. Even with my sweatshirt and jeans on, I was shivering like nobody's business. I don't know how the people in their pajamas must've felt. Cold, probably. After the fire trucks arrived, somebody realized that this was going to take a while, and trotted over to the kinesiology building closeby. This started a mass migration of all the residents of the two towers into the big hallway of that building. We camped out there for maybe another 45 minutes, mingling and sleeping and being a little warmer than we were outside. I grabbed a spot on the far side of a big column from the rows of glass doors, which protected me from some of the radiant chilliness, and tried to relax and be drowsy, so that I could fall asleep again once we were allowed back inside. People were there in every degree of dress and undress you can imagine: many were in pajamas, with bare feet, many in flip-flops and pajamas with a coat on, some were fully dressed like myself, some were even more fully dressed, wearing scarves and coats and mittens, there was one guy wearing socks but no shoes, one guy wearing only a pair of shorts, some people were wrapped in fleece blankets, one guy had an entire comfortor draped over his head and body, and one girl was wearing only an overcoat. It was interesting to see how many people chose warmth over a quick exit, and how many people left so fast they didn't even think to put shoes on. I pity the people who live on the twelfth floor, or even the fifth floor, because you know there must have been a giant mass of people trying to get into the elevator when we came back inside, and they couldn't very well go up all those stairs happily. Fortunately, I only had one set of stairs to go up, so I didn't have to wait in line for the elevator. I went back to bed around 5:15, with a huge stomach-ache and shivering legs. And I think I'll go back to bed again, since I don't have anywhere to be for a few hours yet.

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