Krista Eddy hunches over a propane stove on her back porch with a spatula. Her 2-year-old son Quinn watches as pancakes sizzle in the frying pan.
After a massive earthquake, electricity, gas and water lines would likely stop functioning. So with the fridge out of service for a
, Eddy and her family are eating from what they had in their pantry. After a real quake, Krista's husband, Patrick Alexander, says pancakes wouldn’t be on the menu for long.
"After about two weeks, every meal would be tuna," Alexander says.
Disaster experts recommend having at least two weeks of food stored. The Alexanders think they’d get by for about a week. It could be hard to keep Quinn happy, since many of his favorite foods require refrigeration. But they do have a supply of protein straight from the backyard.
Quinn holds his mother’s hand as they check their chicken coop.
But what if the hens stopped laying, after the trauma of a quake? The Alexanders can’t necessarily count on an egg supply.
The Alexanders soon realize that they need to boost their emergency supplies. The two-and-a-half water jugs in the garage would last only a few days, and their few cans of propane would go quickly, too.
And with a toddler at home, there are other supplies to think about
During the simulated disaster weekend, the parents attempt to fashion a homemade diaper. Eddy gathers scissors, an old towel and duct tape. Quinn stands by, looking on with some suspicion.
"Oh, jeez, I just don’t even have a clue," Eddy says. "Maybe it has to be folded over?"
They pull the towel through Quinn’s legs. The end result is rather droopy.
“That really wouldn’t catch much, would it? I think most of it would go right out the leg,” Eddy says.
But even if they had months of supplies, there are a lot of scenarios for the Alexanders to think through. What if one parent is injured? What happens if Quinn gets sick? What if they’re not at home when an earthquake hits?
"I'm worried we'll be separate. All be separate," Eddy says.
Between both parents' offices and Quinn’s daycare, there are bridges that would be out.
"There'd be no way to find if everyone was okay," Eddy says.
She hugs Quinn and tells him, "I would be worried about you."
They realize they don’t know what would happen to Quinn while they’re at work.
"All those teachers at the daycare center, they have families too," Eddy says. "What if they just take off? There'd be no rules."
They resolve to ask Quinn’s daycare supervisors about their emergency plan right away.
“I want to try and make sure we are as responsible as we can be in making sure he is taken care of, as much as he can be," Alexander says.
They’re also going to complete their emergency kit, so they can rely on more than tuna should an earthquake come. And they may also add a few extra diapers.