As the sun started to set, my apprehension heightened for the coming darkness. I knew that outside in the night would be a free for all of desperate people trying to hang on to some shred of hope that their families would be fed. I never had taken time before to put together a bug-out bag. What basic items I had in my possession would have to do: a black backpack, duck tape, matches and a FGM-148 Javelin. In these types of situations, you can never be too safe, or too prepared. Lifting just the edge of the window shade, I attempted to scope out the activity in front of the building. It appeared eerily calm as the sun took its last survey of the park and tucked its tired head to sleep. Startling in the silence my phone beeped as the notification I had been waiting for came in. “Now or never”, I spoke aloud to my dog, “You stay and hold down the fort, I’ll catch ya on the flip side, bud.”

The door creaked closed behind me. My ears strained for any minute sound while I held my position. Ever so slowly, I lowered myself to the ground, and began the aching crawl cross the coppice. A car crossing the gravel road, a possible footstep to my left, the howl of a hyena in the distance; all made my heart beat from my chest in fear.  Would I ever see my friends and family again? Or worse, what if I came home a failure?

In the distance I saw a sign, the sign I had been praying for an eternity to find. I eased up to a standing position and reached for the door. Bursting through came the most beautiful smell that has ever graced my nostrils. Here they had everything you could want. Displayed were thin, thick ,and even stuffed crust pizzas! Renewed was my belief in God, as I soaked up the aromas of Shangra-La.




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