Friday, April 4, 2014

Yellowstone Super Volcano? What happens if ... (Fiction?)

“Vile, despicable creatures of the Earth … rise up and take your place amongst the living!”

Well, it sounded like a great first line to get attention.

Now, if there was only someone alive to read it.

The super volcano in Yellowstone National Park erupted one week ago, emptying its’ guts of ash and lava.  There is no more Central United States.  Gone is the only way to describe it.  

Yeah, none of us, if there really is someone out there besides myself still alive, have a clue as to what’s going on in the way of rescue efforts, if there are any taking place at all.  Doesn’t much matter as we’ll all be dead soon.  Air is so toxic to breathe anymore being filled with the ash all the time.  If we don’t suffocate, we’ll starve as there’s at least seven feet of ash covering the ground.  And, "No", you can't ski atop it.  

The shock waves shook the house like a 7.0 earthquake that April morning.  It was only a week, but seems so long ago.  I first thought one of the planes that flew overhead on its final landing approach to the airport had crashed prior to reaching the runway.  Power went out immediately.  I figured the lines had been slashed by the airliner.  It happened just as I was right in the middle of blow drying my hair for work.  “Oh well, late again” I figured.

Could It have erupted here in Yellowstone?
We'll never know!
It was the silence that followed that got me.  Silence after everyone shut off their damn car alarms that had been set off by the shock.  Slowly, as one by one they were shut off, the silence took over.  Eerie, almost, like something bad was going to happen.

If we’d only of known the truth of the matter, we might have been more than a little scared.

I finished dressing in the early morning light and made my way outside to survey the damage.  I didn’t see a damn thing there out of the normal.  So, I got into my car and drove on to work, or, I should say, “…tried to drive on to work.” 

I couldn’t go far.  Traffic was snarled up as all the stoplights were powerless.  Hell, I turned around and figured I’d go in later after the power came back on.  I couldn’t do anything there without power, anyway.  We've since surmised that the entire United States power grid was taken out.  And me without batteries ... of course.

Mt. Vesuvius erupted in the 1800's and ash was
spread for miles.  This would only be a pinprick
to a super volcano in Yellowstone.
The neighbors were standing outside when I drove back up into my driveway.  Common chit chat was replaced with questions concerning the noise we’d heard and the loss of power.  None of us knew a thing.  Finally, it hit me to pull out a laptop and turn it on.  Then I remembered that without power, I had no cable, which meant no Internet! 

The stupidity of my actions just pissed me off even more.  About that time, the emergency sirens began to scream out their slow, drawn out moaning.  Later in the day, local police cars were patrolling and announcing through their public address loudspeakers about the volcanic eruption of Yellowstone Park.  We were told to stay in our homes.  Little did we know they were to become our caskets.

My wife was at my daughter’s home fifty miles away when the ash started falling.  It was worse than a snow blizzard’s white out as you couldn’t see half a block away.  It just kept coming and coming.  I watched it, alone, from inside my house, as it climbed in depth from one foot to three, then to five, and then to the top of my picture window. 

Needless to say, I wasn’t going anywhere.

The geysers should've provided plenty of warning.
Was it ignored?
That was a week ago.  The days have passed slowly … so slowly as I can only sit and wait for the end to occur.  We never kept much food around, and I’ve already gone through everything that’s edible.  Even my supply of Diet Cokes is dwindling.  Having an allergy to white enriched flour has helped some as it puts me to sleep less than a half hour after I eat it.  So, I've slept a lot!  Woke up several times in the dark, thinking I was dead.  Kind of wish I was.

I’ll never see my wife again, at least, not in this world.  I don’t know if she’s dead or alive right now.  I hope she’s not suffering in either case.  I miss her.  It just doesn’t seem right not to be together at the end.  Still, she’s with her daughter, so at least she’s got someone to hold on to.

When the end is close, one thinks about all the things they didn’t do, and all the things they wished they’d done.  All the time they’d spent working instead of sharing time together.  All the times a silly spat had separated them as she’d spend the evening in the bedroom pouting, instead of holding each other and appreciating what each had meant to each other.  All the times money had become the major topic of discussion instead of the love they’d shared.  I even regretted all the Sundays I’d slept late so that she and the kids would go to church and I could stay home and enjoy the peaceful moments alone.

Now I was going to die alone.

The ash on the roof is beginning to find its way into the house.  That’s okay, I’ve just about used up all the good air anyway.  I think the ash almost acted as a filter against the falling particles for a while and gave me a few more days of life.  Now, it had decided that it wanted to find out what was living inside the house and end its time.

So, I breathe for the moment.  It won’t be long, I’m sure, before I’m gone.  The ash in the air is starting to get into my lungs.  If it gets too tough, I’ll end it with one of my pistols.  Pistols!  Funny, I thought I’d have to use them to protect myself in case of such a disaster.  Seven feet of ash tend to put an end to anyone trying to break in, that’s for sure.  So, I’ve got over a thousand rounds of ammunition in the house.  Isn’t it ironic that I’ll only need one round to do the job?

If you’re still around in the future and get a chance to read this, I can only hope that you’ll learn the lessons we failed to observe.  Love and appreciate those that mean the most in your life.  Take time to live instead of working all the time.  Enjoy life to the fullest for it is way too short.  And, when it’s over, that’s it … it’s over.

Damn, getting tougher to breathe and darker now. 

What did I do with that pistol?

Afterward:  None of us know if the bison running out of Yellowstone is a warning or a migration.  We do know that Yellowstone houses an amount of magma that could easily create a super volcano.  Should one erupt, life will cease on this Earth as we know it.  Man will survive, but in limited numbers.  Geodesic information has been available for only those with a security clearance since the beginning of the year.  Independents say something is going on.  History proves a thermal blow-out takes place about every 600,00 years.  It has been 640,000 years since the last.  We are well overdue.