We asked members of our San Francisco Emergency Management team to practice what they preach: Talk to your family and friends about preparedness. Over the Thanksgiving holiday they did. Here is one story:
My oldest sister lives overseas with her husband and two daughters. Understandably they get homesick during this time of year. On Facebook, she posted about all things she misses about home and reminded me about a time when I thought I was too cool to smile in those family photos around the dinner table or in front of the Christmas tree.
Today when I look back at those photos I smile. Yes, seeing that scowling young punk is funny but mostly I remember the good times shared with family and friends. Decorating the tree after Thanksgiving, Simbang Gabi (a Filipino Christmas Eve all-nighter), and the big New Year’s Eve Party at my parent’s house are just some the traditions we shared together.
Last year, we started a new tradition. On Thanksgiving, after we stuffed ourselves we sat around the table and reviewed our family emergency plans and talked about our emergency supplies. Why not? Most of the people that I would want to hear from or would want to hear from me in an emergency were all in the same room. My parents chose the neighborhood church as their emergency meeting spot, my other sister and her husband realized they needed supplies for the dogs, and my wife and I decided my brother-in-law in Ohio would be our out-of-area contact.
This year we continued the tradition and all realized that some of the food in our emergency stash was expired (whoops!). But that’s okay. That’s why we do it, so we can take care people we love. We even sent our emergency plans to my sister overseas so she could join in.
Our holiday talks take about thirty minutes and then it’s back to other long time traditions… like that second serving of food!
Our team created Vines (6 second videos) of their holiday talks. Thinking about doing the same with your family or friends? Visit www.sf72.org for conversation ideas. Want to share your experience? Use #holidaytalks and tag us (@SF72org on Twitter and Instagram and @SFDEM on Facebook).