In Case of Emergency: Beignets and a Plan

I don’t associate vegan restaurants with decadence, but Souley Vegan,  Monday through Friday, from 6:00 am – 10:00am, serves beignets and chicory coffee. It takes 11 minutes for me to run across the street, grab my fix and get back  to my desk for a sugar and caffeine party. My party was interrupted on Friday. As I wait for my order, I see a blind man get off a bus. His cane tapped the very edge of the handicap ramp,  his foot landed  where the curbed started and he stumbled. I gasped loudly, which made the waitress look out the window. In a flash she was out the restaurant and on the corner where the bus driver has gotten off the bus to help get the man oriented. The waitress helps the man across the street as I stare out the restaurant window. Why didn’t I rush to help?

View of restaurant and street from my 7th floor office window.

An emergency is a serious, unexpected, and often dangerous situation requiring immediate action. I know what to do in the event of a fire, stop drop and roll. I know what to do in the event of an earthquake, drop, cover and hold on. A helpless person on the street, it’s embarrassing, I’m not proud if it, but I’m not sure what to do. I help myself, but what about others? I thought a lot about this the last few days, and I think it’s as simple as this. Go to the person and ask, may I offer you some assistance.

A friend once told me he does scenarios and thinks about responses. You won’t know in the moment what to do unless you’re prepared. This week, do emergency preparation. Think of scenarios you could encounter and how would you respond. Here are some examples, and note, there are variables with each that will inform your response. It can be intimidating –  someone yells at you at work.  It can be safety – you know a coworker has been drinking heavily and watch, the person staggers to their automobile and are about to drive off. It can be integrity – you hear someone tell an untruth to a group of people. What do you do when someone makes a racist or sexist remark?  These are difficult situations; however, the odds are, you will encounter something unpleasant and you will have no control over that event, but you can control how you respond. Be prepared.


Note: To the Tampa Crew, the architect, the professor, and the realtor – hope you all made it through the storm. For the Deland Family, Riding the Storm Out with a sound track; I’m a little calmer now, didn’t want to see you folks without a roof again. 

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