Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Shake It Baby

When I was a kid, my family lived in Japan for about 4 years. I was relatively little, 3-7, but we have tons of home videos and it's talked about so much that I really have some cool memories of the place. Some of my most vivid memories involve preparing for earthquakes and I can still remember crawling under the table in our kitchen with our whole family and our dad telling us in a serious voice, "This is where we all should meet if you ever feel an earthquake." So you can imagine my horror when, as a 6 year old, I found myself stark naked, standing in the shower watching the entire bathroom sway. I screamed my head off and everyone thought I was hurt but really I was terrified that I wasn't under the kitchen table.

So fast forward 24 years to this afternoon and I'm peacefully doing my homework on my niece's bed in my older sister's house in middle of suburban Virginia. I start to feel the bed shake and immediately I think my kids are somehow shaking it - you know the feeling when a kid climbs into bed with you in the middle of the night and it's dark and you can just feel them coming up? It was that kinda feeling but my kids were all at the park with my awesome sisters. So my immediate next thought was, "There's a mass murderer under this bed in my sister's house and no one is even home to hear me scream."

After about 5 seconds I realized this was more than the bed shaking, since now the walls were going too. It felt like an earthquake but, come on, this is Virginia, not Japan, right? Wrong. After 15 seconds I was pretty sure I had felt this before, and all my childhood memories of hiding under my desk at school during earthquake drills came rushing back. I realized I should go outside so, of course, I grabbed my laptop and walked on out to talk with all the neighbors who were also wandering outside. And like any sane person, I next googled "Stephen's City earthquake" only to find nothing so thought, "Wow, that was weird" then went back to studying. Only when my sister's came home and I realized they had totally missed it did we get online to hear about the 5.8 tremor that had an epicenter about 50 miles from the farm. Crazy world, huh?

On the bright side, we didn't have any damage anywhere although Culpeper, VA, which is our main stomping ground, had quite a few buildings damaged. And on the really bright side - this canceled Nathan's first day of kindergarten which delayed my sadness at letting my little man go off to school and let me blog about this instead. Hopefully these aftershocks will keep down (we haven't felt a single on of the supposed 4) and we'll all sleep well tonight.

1 comment:

  1. Glad you guys are safe. The only quake I've been in only lasted about 10 seconds. I bet those extra 20 seconds feel pretty scary!