By Emma Daubenmerkl, Spring 2017
The day started out like every other (every other day being the past two weeks that I’ve been at Harlaxton). I woke up to my alarm clock going off at 6:45 a.m.. I turned it off and bumbled around in the dark to find my shoes and glasses without waking my roommate up. After checking all the notification that I got on my phone the previous night (it was like 1 Facebook notification and a Snapchat-- I’m so popular!). I proceeded to follow the rest of my morning routine by grabbing my towel and all my other shower supplies. Like I said, it started out like any other morning.
It was halfway through my shower when the morning took a turn for the worst. I heard this strange screeching sound very faintly. It took me a second to recognize what the sound was.
Are you kidding me? I thought. The fire alarm was going off. I quickly turned the shower off and grabbed my glasses. Now what? I looked around. There was no way that I was going outside in a towel. I don’t care if I’m the last one out there; I am going to put clothes on first. I reached up, quickly put my pajamas back on, and ran out of the bathroom.
In doing so, I ran into a few other girls on my floor. I wasn’t the last one! We walked to the main staircase where Megan (one of the interns) was standing holding a paper that had fire on it. Can’t go that way. We ran to the Cedar Staircase on the other side of the floor, regretting the decision as one of the girls slipped and fell down amidst the chaos. She quickly got back up and we continued our way to the nearest exit, screeching fire alarm still in the background.
Huffing and puffing, we got to the second floor (we started on the fifth) only to discover yet another faculty member holding a fire sign, warning us of the false fire down the adjacent corridor. With only seven minutes to evacuate the building I was starting to think we were never going to get out. We frantically ran through the state rooms, ending up in the Conservatory. Perfect! That’ll take us outside at least.
We ran through the green house and out of the manor. No one in sight, we realized we were on the wrong side of the Manor. After running to find the rest of the school, we realized our RA was nowhere to be seen and we stood around like idiots for a few minutes (which was probably just a few seconds but it felt like a really long time) until someone finally called us over.
I ran into a few of my friends, many complaining about forgotten glasses and being awakened too early, as I sit there soaking wet and shivering (I’m not bitter at all). Attendance was taken and I proceeded to complain to everyone about how I was in the shower when the alarm went off (as one does in situations like that).
Eventually we were allowed to go back inside (we still don’t know if we made the time or not… hopefully we won’t have to go through that again). I trudged up the five floors to my room, went into the bathroom to grab all of my stuff and proceeded to my room. As I passed by some of the other girls on my floor said, “Does anyone else feel personally victimized by the professors this morning?” I for sure did!