??Journey or destination??

Exploring life experiences at home and beyond – Destination Happiness

What’s important?


Your home is on fire. Grab five items (assume all people and animals are safe). What did you grab?

I found this post idea on a Daily Prompt site of a while ago and it seemed appropriate to write on.

Today, traveling back from a school excursion on alighting the bus , the driver was discussing the issue of back burning and the importance of its timing. I recalled in my mind the local bushfires of 1994 when my coastal settlement was effectively ringed by fire. At that time I was caught here with my children (3.5 and 5 years old). While we were  luckily never in real danger from the fire ( just a few darkened tree trunks , an oil slick on the pool from burnt eucalyptus leaves and a very sooty home to clean after) we ‘evacuated’ to a nearby hotel on my mother’s insistence – she was sure I would sleep through evacuation calls. This would have been quite difficult in reality, as I didn’t really sleep the first night but spent it outside with neighbours as they plugged drainpipes and filled them with water while watching the orange flickers rising up from behind the hill.

Before we left for the hotel I told the kids to each pack a backpack of important things. I was frazzled by heat and no sleep -and no take away food, as McDonald trucks couldn’t bring in supplies as the freeway was cut in all directions). Funnily too, we had tried a local BBQ chicken store (with flames licking behind the store, a helicopter dipping into the creek to retrieve water to douse the fires) only to read the somewhat ironic sign on the door “No Charcoal Chickens today!”

So, just in case the fire turned our way in my absence I collected some things I considered important as I had instructed the children to do.  In my collection I took the black briefcase that held all our important paper documents. I figured I might need insurance record. I then tugged photos from the walls and collected the photo albums and chucked them into the car boot. I filled a washing hamper with clean clothes for us all and tossed in a few bottles of water and some biscuits and headed to the hotel with an ocean view, where we stayed in air conditioned comfort for a couple of nights. J

What did the kids have in their important bags? My son had his collection of Thomas the Tank engine toys and a few other toys and books. My daughter had some Barbie dolls, a plastic tea set and some princess heel kid shoes. I obviously had taught them what important meant.

Today , if I were to leave in a hurry and could take only 5 things I’d take my iPad , iPhone( and the chargers), external hard drive from the desktop computer, the old photo albums (not yet digitalised ) and my jewellery box. Having all insurance details etc contained digitally is a bonus.

What would you take?

Author: Travelling Macs

A mum to 2 grown up children who always make me proud, a wife and a full time school teacher. I love eating great food but am not motivated to cook. Love traveling around this great country in which I live. Often found traveling with my husband Brian. I write for pleasure and if it's read (and enjoyed) by others then that's a bonus! 2014 saw me begin the 'new' me. Working hard at leaving the fear of 'what if' behind and replacing it with YOLO adventures. :)

12 thoughts on “What’s important?

  1. Definitely my old photo albums, my engagement ring it’s an heirloom from hubbys family and means so much, a bra cause I tend to not actually wear them at home lol, my phone and a snow globe my mother bought me the christmas after my father passed away…..great post xxx

  2. Just 5? Tough call.
    Clothing, important papers (birth certificates, etc), phone and charger, photos on disc, and bottled water. Wow, that was really hard.
    Hopefully, I never have to make that decision.

    • I know of a friend that didn’t have the luxury of time when a fire started unexpectedly and raced up a valley to her home. She did escape though with the most import thing- her family’s safety. I can’t even begin to imagine that fear. Fire is a scary element.

  3. Mmmmmm……a case of savvy b, and them other sentimental things xx

  4. We packed a bag last summer when the fire alert rose to what we considered our ‘go now’ signal.Luckily nothing came of it. But in my essential bag was my iPad, myportable hard drive, the photos from the wall from Mum’s house, my special edition 12 inch album of Secret Codes and Battleships and my camera, and my make up bag!

  5. I have had the experience of evacuating a house (flat) on fire. I grabbed a suitcase and threw random items in it. I have no memory of what I chose.
    However, I hung around to assist the firemen with vital information. (well I was single at the time 🙂 )
    Yes…the alcoholic who set fire to his mattress with a smouldering cigarette had left the building.
    No…there is no one left inside.
    Now, I would try to save photo albums and other important items, but probably I would just grab a suitcase and throw in random things!

  6. My computer and the photos. Plus paper work. I’d also grab two folders of handwritten writing I’m yet to type up.

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