I’ve heard this question a lot of times relating to various situations, and I’ve always regarded it as something you can’t truely answer until you’ve been in that sort of situation.
My list is the cat, my cell phone and charger, my WoW install discs, and my camera. Maybe not the best list in the world, but when the adrenaline is pumping you don’t exactly think straight.
In other words, I had the scariest afternoon in my life today. Around 2:30 one of the neighbours called, probably to talk to my mother who wasn’t home, but she told me that she could smell smoke and it looked like there was a forest fire a ways behind her house. I’d just gotten out of the shower, but once I got my glasses on, sure enough there was a large band of grey on the horizon, over the trees, in that direction. I watch it for a while, then get another call saying that the police had been to her house–the fire had jumped the road and was out of control, get the important stuff together in case we need to evacuate.
So here’s me, home by myself, and while I don’t have a lot that’s sentimental and irreplacable, I have no idea what my parents would want. Plus I can see the smoke, as well as fire trucks from two departments going back and forth with more water. I got pretty freaked, and was anything but calm–I was most certainly in tears at some points. Fortunately, here’s where friends and family come in–I called a friend nearby to see if I could go to her place if really necessary. She suggested I call any family instead. I couldnt’ bring myself to because I was so shaken, but fortunately one of my aunts heard about it and called to see how we were doing. Between her and my neighbour I was able to collect myself enough to start packing things (jewelry, clothes, the strongbox and mom’s truckload of photoalbums, mom’s record collection, etc.) My parents eventually got home, after having to convince a police officer to let them through the barricade, and at that point I was finally able to really calm down.
At this point, the cars are still packed (we have three vehicles we can drive, thankfully–a car, a wagon and a pick-up), but things have calmed down a lot–there’s been a number of emergency vehicles go by without lights flashing, and there’s hardly any smoke. The fire wasn’t really moving in our direction either, fortunately.