*** Chapter 3 Part 2
They were sitting at the tables outside of the Starbucks on Fulton, eating fresh veggie wraps from the deli case at Trader Joe’s. What would normally be a packed intersection was now an empty graveyard of standing vehicles. The silence was amazing. You could hear birds in trees all the way across Marconi. You could hear the breeze as well as feel it. Knots of suppressed fear and anxiety started to work loose and dissolve. It was going to be all right, Dell thought. Somehow they would make it. They may never make sense of it, but they would make it.
“So,” she said, “What’s our next move?”
Panda was looking at the array of vehicle choices before her in the parking lot and on the street. “I was thinking we need to get one of these big honkin’ trucks for hauling and go find a generator that is gasoline powered. Then find some deep-freezes that we could hook up… but then I think that might wait until we know where we are going to be living. I think we need to find those solar homes I read about. See if any are off the grid or dependant on the electric and gas systems.
And what about natural gas? Is that a safe alternative if nobody is keeping the pressure gauges working? We should make sure the house has a good fireplace or better yet a pellet stove.
And we need to find all the garden plots, the municipal ones, and see if they need to be watered. And antibiotics. Do those need to be refrigerated? We need medical supplies…”
Dell rolled her eyes and said, “I was thinking more like getting a Starbucks.”
Panda stopped her run-on tirade and looked behind her into the empty store.
“Sure, why not? They’ve got to have some kind of employee operations manual we can read.”
“Oh for heaven’s sake,” said Dell, “How hard can it be to make a pot of coffee!”