For the first time EVER in my life I have been affected by, close to or threatened by a FIRE in the place where I lay down my head! Last night, about 4:20am I awoke to the sounds of a fire alarm in my building…now I wasn’t sure what to think, because the fire alarm has gone off at least 4 times by accident and a handful of other times for testing, etc…so was this real? But, the subsequent PA announcement declared a fire one floor below mine! So, I got myself together and proceeded to leave my place and head to the stairs. As soon as I got outside my door, I could smell the smoke – THERE REALLY WAS CAUSE FOR CONCERN. Basically I ended up descending 30+ flights of stairs with hundreds of half-awake neighbors and their pets. I did pretty well getting down – not a “stairs” workout I care for – but I did get sort of dizzy toward the bottom. My calves got pretty tight from the surprise trek, but at least I was safe. Everyone was now on the street, there were several Miami Fire Trucks and personnel on the street, and of all the times for Miami to be cold and windy, it was now! Luckily, my friend Cherisse lives in the building next door, and she answered her phone, so I was able to take refuge in her place. After an hour or so we went back to check and all was well, so I returned to my place…thank GOD! The moral of the story is, I was reminded of how quickly thing/life can change. In hindsight this is a minor inconvenience compared to what so many other people unexpectedly endure, but a literal “wake up call” that we should always be thankful to wake up and see another day.