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Earlier, a description was depicted of an early morning awakening by a Fire Alarm sounding in our motel room. My husband was finishing up with his shower, and I still was dozing. Since I'm disabled, we try to obtain a ground level room. It's not always possible, but in this case we were pleased that we were. When I decided to check on the extend of the fire, my nearby crutches were grabbed and I headed towards the room's entrance way. My plan was to see if smoke was coming in underneath the door. If there was smoke, we knew to delay its killing affects by placing wet towels along the door edge and to stay low. Also, you need to touch the doorknob for its temperature. If the doorknob was hot to the touch, we knew that wouldn't be a way to exit the motel room. We would need to break the window and exit towards safety in that manner.

As I slowly made my way towards the door, the Fire Alarm stopped its blaring noise and flashing light. What did this mean? Was it a false alarm? Turns out, it was.

This was the first time in over 37 years of travel that we experienced the actual sounding of a Fire Alarm. It was a wake-up call. Mentally, I always thought that by knowing what to do would be enough. However, reality doesn't mean you will survive if a fire occurs. You need to plan ahead, and know what actual steps you will take. Practice, if you're able.

When this alarm awoke me, I thought first it was our alarm clock. Then, mental anguish arose. I couldn't decide whether or not to take the time to put on my full leg brace. The brace would enable me to be mobile. However, it would be a hindrance if we needed to crawl along the foyer floorway. Suppose we had been on a different level. Elevators, available or not, would not be accessible. Of course, descending while in a sitting position would be done. Should I put on some clothes? Since the weather was warm, our jackets were still in our van. What would we have done if we were traveling internationally. The desire to put on the brace and some clothes undoubtedly would happen. These are important thoughts, but should they take precedence. Exiting as quickly as possible should head the top of the list. Sometimes seconds might make the difference between life and death.

We realized that we weren't really ready if a fire had occurred. Even if our motel stay was only for one night, such as it was this past summer, we needed to plan and be more prepared.

Would you be ready, really ready, if a fire happened? Give it some serious thought. It could be the difference between your life and death.

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