Monday, January 25, 2016


At around 1:30 a.m. Sunday morning, DL and I were rattled awake by a rolling earthquake. DL calmly laid there. I wondered aloud whether we should get up. MC later told me that our reactions matched our backgrounds. I'm from a place where earthquakes can and have killed people. DL is from the East Coast, where they have none, and his time in the Alaskan Interior has taught him that earthquakes are interesting, but no big deal. I thought about it and decided that I was actually in the safest place I could run to anyway, being in a securely built log cabin with posts through every corner. It did occur to me that it might have been a tiny earthquake right beneath us, or a giant one in, say, Seattle, so we flipped on NPR. They were playing a cooking show, so apparently it was, indeed, no big deal. Apparently, it was centered in the Cook Inlet, and there was some property damage, especially from some explosions from a gas leak, but no injuries were caused, and no lives were lost.

Now that I think about it, I have never actually "experienced" the drama of a big earthquake. Our historic "big one" in San Francisco in 1989 affected our rock-built neighborhood very little. My sister and I, who were doing homework with our friend and neighbor PG, got into our kitchen doorway, then shrugged and went back to doing homework. We had no idea how bad it was until we lost power, and then listened to reports on the radio. Entire structures had tumbled down. One section of the Bay Bridge had fallen to the level below. But I feel like that earthquake is bigger in my memories due to reading and hearing about others' experiences than anything I experienced myself. My mom told us her office was frightening, with chunks falling from the ceilings and everyone fumbling their way out through the debris in the dark.

I hope my earthquake luck continues to hold out! I guess being, at present, a few hundred miles from the most active fault lines is of some reassurance. And living and working only in tiny buildings with no gas lines helps, as well.


B said...

Glad you are well. BTW, Mdr has been off web access for a week but I'm sure she would also comment the same!

Arvay said...

@B, thank you! I was thinking our our joint experience of the "major, but minor for us" earthquake was repeated when you were in So Cal during the Northridge quake. We were so relieved to hear you were okay!