Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Three Sirens Sound in Haifa

Inch Trying to Get Some Sleep Between Sirens

It's not even noon yet, and Haifa has already had a siren at 10:37 (that's the one that woke me up - but in my defense, I went to sleep very late) and at 11:25 AM. My apartment was completely quiet - no television, no radio on. I was able to hear far-off booms after the first siren. Maybe I should say, "feel." The booms aren't just sounds - they make your building shake/vibrate, albeit only slightly if they hit far away.
Yesterday, they have started evacuating some the remaining residents of the border town, Kiryat Shmona. This is obviously not going to happen in Haifa - we don't have it nearly as bad here. Our instructions in Haifa are not to go out unnecessarily and to always be in promixity to a protected space (bomb shelter or "mamad," a safe room) in case the sirens come on. Many of the people of Kiryat Shmona, however, have been spending almost one month sitting in bomb shelters, relying on food to be delivered to them. Also, Kiryat Shmona gets shelled at all hours, while we in Haifa get shelled (usually) only during daylight, and less frequently. I have had this explained to me: since Kiryat Shmona is closer, it can be shelled using portable rocket launchers and Hizbollah can quickly scurry back to safety. Haifa though, being further north, requires heavier rockets and launchers, loaded onto trucks, which can clearly be tracked in the night sky (with the flames that shoot out) and eliminated almost immediately by the Israeli Air Force.
I had to interrupt my posting at 11:45 and change the headlines to "Three" instead of "Two Sirens Sound in Haifa." I didn't take my laptop with me to the hallway as I often do because I have it set up in my room and the cable doesn't reach that far.

Update: There was another, final siren of the day at 13:10 PM.


Zakhi said...

Four by 13:15 :-)

I actually went to the beach this morning. It seemed as if there are no sirens before noon (for more than a week), so I took the chance. Obviously, this is the time the Hizbulla decided to wake up early.
During the first siren, I just stayed on the beach (it's quite remote, so I thought it was kind of safe). But then I heard the booms. They were far enough, but still this made me a little shaky, and eventually I set off. Of course, as I was walking to my car, the second siren caught me, so I just crouched by my car. The third one caught me while driving back, maybe a minute from my house. I pulled over and went into a shelter in a building where my uncle lives. No one was there.

That's quite an experience, I must say :-)

Carmia said...

Hi Zakhi,

I think you should have crouched UNDER the car instead of next to it ;)

Next time, go to the beach in Atlit or somewhere else further south... don't take the chance. The beach is one of the most dangerous places because there are no shelters there.

Noah S. said...

Inch is so damn CUTE!

Carmia said...

Yes, she is. In fact, we have nicknamed her "Dugmanit-Al" (Supermodel).