This story is by Chiane Hill and was part of our 2017 Winter Writing Contest. You can find all the writing contest stories here.
What a beautiful island I live on. The white sand, the crystal clear blue water, and the beautiful hibiscus and poinsettia are blooming everywhere I look. I’m so happy that Sarah, my best friend since high school told me about this house. This morning was an especially beautiful day. The trade winds were blowing a nice warm breeze from the east. Lexi and I started walking to Sarah’s house for our daily morning walk. Princess, a poodle-terrier and Sarah, lived about 10 minutes from us.
It was a very quiet morning as far as people go. In fact, where is everyone? I know they aren’t going to let a little wind scare them. Lexi and I finally get to Sarah’s house and I called her name to let her know we were there. The look on Sarah’s face scared me.
“Sarah, what’s wrong? Why do you look like you are scared out of your mind?” Sarah looked at me with such shock and surprise in her face, but she continued to pack important papers and clothes. It looked like she was preparing to leave her home very quickly. I felt a surge of fear run through my veins. My heart was pounding but I still did not understand why. “Samantha why are you walking around the island when you only have 30 minutes before the last ferry leaves?” My heart picked up an even faster pace. First, Sarah never called me Samantha unless she was being very serious, and second what was happening? “Samantha, there’s a hurricane on the way and they predict it’s going to be a category 5 and the eye is going right over our piece of paradise.”
“What!” I exclaimed. I felt my blood run cold with fear. Why have I not heard about the hurricane? I must have fallen asleep earlier than I thought last night and did not check my phone when I woke up. It would take 10 minutes just to get back to my house, 10 minutes to pack, and that leaves 10 minutes to get to the ferry. I should just make it with a minute to spare. Sarah said that she would meet me at my house since she was almost ready to leave.
As I approached my house I noticed the winds were becoming stronger and it was beginning to rain. I went inside quickly. I don’t have a clue on what to pack. I had to get my important papers like my ATM cards, driver’s license and checkbook. Suddenly I froze. “Where’s my checkbook?” I asked myself as I ran around the house frantically looking for it.
Sarah and Princess are coming up my driveway. This leaves us five minutes before we have to head for the ferry. “Sam! Why are you running around like a chicken with their head chopped off?” Sarah asked me. “I can’t find my checkbook! I don’t remember where I put it. I always use my card you know? I want to take it just in case the ATM machines aren’t working.” I started having a panic and anxiety attack. I decided to check my bedroom one more time and looked on my nightstand. “Sarah! I found it!” I said with relief in my voice. “Okay good. Now we have to go. Hurry!” Sarah replied with a sense of urgency in her voice.
I still had to pack my clothes and Lexi’s treats since she has a tendency to be extremely nervous. “Sarah? Are you still here?” I called. “Of course I’m still here. I’m in your room. Where’s Lexi?” She replied. “She’s trying to go outside in the backyard. Lexi!” I called. I heard my Shih Tzu come running excitedly toward Samantha and I. I pet her quickly and said, “We’re going to go for a walk to the ferry Lexi. Sarah, do you have everything you need with you already?” I asked putting Lexi’s leash and collar on so she wouldn’t be so nervous. “Yeah. Princess and I are ready. We have to hurry. We’ve already spent 10 minutes getting your belongings together. We only have 10 minutes to get on that ferry.”
“I was thinking that we should leave our cars here in the garage. It’s safer than out in the elements. What do you think?” I asked Sarah. “Yeah. Do you think our homes will still be here after the hurricane?” Sarah asked. “Everything will be fine. Positive thinking.” I replied. “Now we need to get to that ferry. I have Princess on her leash and you have Lexi on her leash.” Sarah said leaving my house.
Sarah and I started walking to where the ferry was when we felt a strong gust of wind. Lexi got so scared that she wiggled out of her collar and ran back towards home. “Oh my gosh. Lexi come back!”I knew I should have carried her because she is such a nervous dog. Princess started barking as if to tell Lexi to come on. Lexi wouldn’t come back, so I had to go get her. Time was ticking and all of a sudden we hear the horn of the ferry blowing. This meant that we have about 2 minutes to get on the ferry.
I told Sarah to get to the ferry and tell the ferry conductor that I was on my way. I ran back to the house, grabbed Lexi and ran with her in my arms. Lexi is a tiny bit overweight so this was a challenge, and I soon found myself out of breath and slowing down. I heard the ferry horn again. One minute before departure. I was not going to make it. I was about 3 minutes out. I decided that the only way to make the ferry was to put Lexi down and we both ran.
By now we are both soaked to the bones and the wind is blowing into our faces. I wanted to stop and go home and ride out the storm, but Sarah said it was a category 5, which meant the winds would be blowing at least 155 miles an hour. I knew this wasn’t a good idea so Lexi and I ran for our lives toward the ferry. The horn blew for the 3rd time; meaning it’s leaving. I was praying that Sarah got the conductor to wait for us.
The wind was so strong now and it was raining so hard that I really couldn’t see where I was going. Lexi was pulling me towards the ferry. As I got closer, I heard a tiny bark. Princess was calling us, letting Lexi know where they were. As I was approaching the ferry I saw the runway going up. They were going to leave us. I started yelling for them to wait. “Wait! Wait! We are here. Don’t leave us.” Lexi was barking at Princess and Princess was barking at Lexi. Then all of a sudden the runway came back down. They saw us. Lexi and I got on. Sarah and Princess had held the ferry for us. Lexi and I looked like two wet puppies. The ferry left and headed towards the mainland. I pray that our homes will still be there when we get back.