After the recent devastating earthquake in China and then the cyclone in Myanmar before that, I felt so utterly helpless. Other than donating money, I couldn't think of anything I could do to help.
Then I realized, sheesh, how helpful would I be in the middle of a crisis right here in the U.S.? The last time I almost died, I was with my dear and fast-thinking friend Cindy. My legs were almost lopped off by a guy who had a "seizure" in his car and careened up onto the curb where we were standing. (I think the empty vodka bottles had something to do with his "seizure.") While I stared dazedly at my car's smashed trunk--that I was just about to open, Cindy sprang into action like the former FBI agent that she was.
So today, I hauled myself on over to the American Red Cross where I took a CPR Class for Professionals. (My sister, who is studying to be a nurse--was the professional; I was not. I kept getting story ideas during the class, which may account for why I blinked uncertainly every time our instructor barked a question at me. Or not.) Even though I am now a card-carrying Red Cross trained citizen, I know that I'd still want Cindy at my side in any kind of emergency.