Thursday, August 02, 2007

Safe & Well

The Twin Cities are like a small town. Obviously they're the biggest cities in MN, and have all of the benefits of living in a big city, but in the past 6 months of living here I've been so struck by how interconnected each person I meet is with so many others. It's a very connected - and loving - city, and I can only imagine the pain that everyone feels right now back home.

And this is how I know that the TC is our home - I feel terrible to be away now. I wish I were there and could do something.

Here's a link to the TC Red Cross. Please thing about making a donation - and if you live in MN think about giving blood because the reserves are getting low. 20 folks are still missing.

When I couldn't locate Gerry last night an online friend kindly sent me the hotline number - here's that info for anyone who may need it and not know where to get it:

Family Assistance Center

(612) 871-7676
Holiday-Inn Metrodome
1500 Washington Ave.
Minneapolis, MN 55454

NOTE - Due to call volume, they are currently experiencing difficulties with our phone systems.

To register yourself as SAFE and WELL or to search for information on a loved one - please visit

Oddly, as I was getting dressed on Wed I thought, "I should give blood before we go to Rochester - this is the time when blood is really needed..." I used to donate blood a lot in NYC.
Listening to the TV last night, hearing the reporters conjecture on the folks who were trapped in cars - "The myth of the air bubble isn't true..." just turned me inside out.

When I heard that Gerry was okay, I was so grateful. And then kept thinking all night, "There are at least 20 other families that are sleepless, worried, imagining the worst..."

Folks, listen to this mom - CALL YOUR FAMILIES just to say "Hi" and "I love you!"

It is almost laughably cliche, but when Gerry dropped me off at the airport I didn't like the way he pulled up to the curb. I thought I was running late, I was stressed, and I snapped at him, "Oh, just pull up for god's sake!"

My last comments to him before I left were annoyed, and my goodbye kiss to him was grudging. I almost forgot to kiss poor Maxie, and it wasn't the 'loving mommy kiss' I would have liked it to be.

I'm so glad that's not the last physical connection we'll have.

I know as soon as I get to my class I'll be able to focus - right now I'm wondering HOW I'll focus, but I know it will come. Be really nice to everyone today.


Anonymous said...

Annie: After 9/11, a local woman, who lost her husband, said she remembered thinking, when dropping her husband off at the airport and there was the hurried brush kiss, there should be more to the good bye. I think of her every day as my DH and I give a kiss as we leave the house each time. His simple coffee on the bedside in the morning, even if I am not awake and it cools down, is a reminder of our relationship.


August 02, 2007 7:24 AM  
Jean said...

You and your family were the first I thought of when I saw the news reports about the bridge collapse. Thank God that you all are OK.

August 02, 2007 8:56 AM  
Crys said...

All I can say is ditto to the last comment. I'm so glad to hear that your family is alright. My prayers go out to the others who may be waiting and wondering.

August 02, 2007 8:58 AM  
Barbara said...

I am so relieved for you to find out that Gerry was not involved in the bridge collapse.

You and your family are in my thoughts.

August 02, 2007 9:07 AM  
Iris said...

I kiss both hubby and daughter goodbye every morning when I leave the house for work - usually they are still in bed - I leave very early - my daughter sometimes later asks me if I said goodbye to her, because in her sleep-stupor she doesn't remember, but I've told her often that I ALWAYS do it, and she believes me and we have a chuckle over her not remembering.

I also kiss them goodbye even if I'm just driving to the market for milk.

As for the hotel phone not ringing - it is possible they rang the wrong room. Men. Under the circumstances he should have asked them to check the room number again, and if necessary to send someone to the room. I've seen situations where the previous occupant has (probably accidentally, maybe not) pulled plugs out of walls. Also possible that there was just something wrong with that phone. If you're still in that hotel, call the desk and ask them to call you right back. Murphy says....

Glad everyone is fine.

August 02, 2007 9:10 AM  
ML said...

Annie, I thought of you last night when my daughter came and told me about the 35W. Her boyfriend was going to head back up to the TC yesterday and he would have been using that road--probably about then. Shudder. May those who perished rest in peace.

Concerning the childhood fear you were describing--it is mine, too. I happened to see an episode of "Mythbusters" that was researching the best way to escape from a submerged car (and it was difficult for me to watch). In order to break the glass and crawl out, your best defense is either 1) The Club--that thing you lock your steering wheel with or 2) a tool with a strong pointy metal thing, sold specifically to break the window in case of emergency or 3) maybe even an awl. The demonstration was illuminating. Just a strong pointy tool punched into the window surface causes the tempered glass to break up like a mosaic and enable you to crumble it away and get out of the window. And, frankly, a pair of scissors to cut the seat belt wouldn't be a bad idea.
Big deep breath.

August 02, 2007 9:48 AM  
Liz R. said...

You and your family were the first thing I thought of when I heard about the collapse. We've never met and you only know me as a name on a page, but I was panicked! I'm so very glad that everyone you love is safe. Last night I worried about you and your family as if you were MY family. Isn't it amazing how the internet can turn our world into one big family??

I haven't felt that way since 9/11/01 when my family was spread all over Manhattan and couldn't be reached. I completely understand how scared you must have been.

Try to have a good day, Annie!

August 02, 2007 10:10 AM  
susanc said...

I, too, immediately thought of you and your family when the news broke of the bridge collapse. I am so glad that you are all safe and sound. Life can change in the blink of an eye and we should all remember to live each day like it was our last. One day it will be. Be kind to others and love your family and friends. I'm thinking and praying for those who are not so fortunate this morning.

August 02, 2007 10:22 AM  
Mary Kay said...

Hi Annie,
I am so relieved you and your family are ok. So is my daughter, Kris. She said phone service was out. I got a text from her at 10:30. I too regretted my shortness on the phone at 5:20 pm while she was on I-395 & 94 interchange coming from work...Boy, what a tragedy...and right after the sewer tragedy...will it stop, or at least slow down? I hope your return trip is less bumpy than your travel so far.

August 02, 2007 10:43 AM  
Leslie said...

I was thinking and wondering about you, Gerry and Max last night too. I'm so happy you are all well and unscathed, physically, by that.

With regard to kissing good-bye?? Bud and Ora Brubaker were married a bit longer than 70 years. They kissed goodbye even if it were just a trip to the store for milk. They even did it during their final days in the nursing home when they went to different parts of the facility. Ora told me once that there were times she could just shake Buddy but she knew she'd never forgive herself if their last good-bye were one of anger.

August 02, 2007 11:09 AM  
Deenz said...

I'm glad to hear that you and yours are ok...when I heard where the bridge collapsed, I instantly thought isn't that where Annie & co live???

Whew. And my condolences to all the families out there that weren't so fortunate.

August 02, 2007 12:09 PM  
PICAdrienne said...

You and yours were the first people I thought of when I heard the news. I am so glad you are all as ok as you were prior to the collapse.

Last night at my girls' youth group the speaker talked for a bit about sometimes tomorrow doesn't come, and living your life as it should be lived EVERY day. I don't know if he had heard the news or not, but a good message to give to a bunch of teens, and the rest of us too.

Take care.

August 02, 2007 12:13 PM  
Grace Yaskovic said...

I am so relieved you are okay, my DH even called to find out if we heard from Annie and if all were okay. And my daughter emailed asking me "Doesn't your cyberfriend ANnie live there" We are so happy you are safe and well and the family is safe too. You are in our prayers, Grace from NJ

August 02, 2007 2:34 PM  
Anonymous said...

Annie, You were the first person I thought of when I heard the news. It must have been awful until you confirmed that your husband is OK. So glad that your family is safe. Please take care. Pat in VT

August 02, 2007 3:54 PM  
fiamma said...

i thought of you and yours the minute i heard the news. Glad you are ok and I feel awful for those waiting to find their loved ones. Safe trip home.


August 02, 2007 4:33 PM  
Kim in KCK said...

When I heard the news this morning, my first thought was for you and your family. Funny for a person I've never met in person! Glad to hear all, at least in your family, are safe.

August 02, 2007 5:05 PM  
Anonymous said...

I'm glad you are ok. I wish I knew how to find out if people I've fallen out of touch with are ok. I lived about 5 miles from this bridge for 2 years while I was getting my master's and it breaks my heart to think of this great city going through this tradgedy.

August 02, 2007 8:10 PM  
Cynthia said...

I am so glad that everything turned out okay for you and your heart goes out to those who have lost loved ones. I totally agree with how sometimes we get so lost in the moment that we don't think that that moment could be our last with someone we love. While it is hard to always be present in our love, I know I work so hard to make sure that my partings with my husband and son are done with love and gratitude because you just never know....

August 02, 2007 9:38 PM  
Jess said...

Good to hear that Gerry is safe and sound. How incredibly scary to be unable to reach him last night.

Thank you for the reminder to give blood! I can't go right now, as I just gave blood a couple weeks ago, but it sounds like there are a ton of people lined up to give blood now.

August 02, 2007 10:31 PM  

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