When I became a parent, a ritual began to set in, that of ‘safety paranoia’. The realisation that I now had a responsibility to keep my family safe changed my awareness to the surroundings that I was in. Plane journeys became “where are the emergency exits? How far away from them are we? What are the instructions for opening the emergency door?”. Arrivals to the hotel changed from the ‘throw everything into the room and head for the bar’, to, “where’s that confusing diagram on the wall that shows the consolation of fire exit routes?’. Many a time my children asked my wife upon arrival “where’s Dad, has he gone to the pool?” “No” she would respond. “he’s gone to find the fire exits” (sad, I know, but surely there’s someone else out there that thinks like this? please).
I think we are more diligent to ‘safety paranoia’ in places that we are unfamiliar with, but what about the place that we spend most of our time together as a family? The home.