So there I was at nine o'clock on a Saturday night. In my hotel room, on the top floor, settling in for the night. First I heard the howl. The the strobe went off. Then the PA system sounded the announcement. But I was already moving by then. I guess I have a strong sense of self preservation.
I grabbed my shoes, coat, and phone and headed into the hall. A quick look around revealed the exit stairs five doors down. People began pouring into the hall around me, and they followed me into the stairwell. I headed down at increasing speed. That's a situation where Aspergian logic is very good. I don't really think; I just go.
To my amazement, no one single door was open as I descended. The hotel was full, yet I did not meet a single person in the fire escape until the second floor, where people had started to stream through from the upper lobby. I joined the stream down the last flight of stairs and walked out into the night. It was a clear 35 degree night in Buffalo.
There were only about 25 people outside, but more began emerging as I watched. I marveled at the fact that I had reached safe ground from the far corner of the top floor while there were still people in the lobby. Security people began herding people back away from the doors as I heard the approach of sirens.
Within a few minutes we had four fire trucks and they suited up and went inside. It wasn't a big deal in the end - a small cooking fire. Half an hour later,, we got the all clear to go back inside. Of course, there were now 500 hotel guests lined up to use the four elevators, which were still disabled for fire service.
I walked back to the fire escape and trudged back up ten flights of stairs as the fire crew came down. Hopefully, the hotel will not catch fire again before I leave as I have to go to sleep now.