After lunch today, I was at the office sitting in front of my computer when suddenly my desk moved with a peculiar, fluid, wobbly motion that totally freaked me out.
“Did you feel that?” I asked my boss, who was walking by my desk.
Crap, I thought, I’m either having some kind of hallucinatory reaction my MSG saturated lunch or my brain is short circuiting the way it does on the very rare occasions I get a migraine headaches.
It was neither. It was an earthquake!
As it turned out, other people in my office felt it too and for about a half an hour it was the buzz as we discussed who felt it and recounted our previous earthquake experiences (mine was the small tremor my family woke up to in 1983). Then we all got back to business.
Even though the seismic event today was so insignificant in comparison to the devastation experienced by other areas in the past few years, it set me on edge. Since we live where we do, we always feel immune to natural disaster. We don’t live on a fault line, next to a volcano or in a zone prone to tornados, flash floods or hurricanes. Even the big north east coast blackout of 2003 didn’t affect our part of town (our power was restored about 3 hours after it went out). Other than some violent windstorms that knock down a few tree branches, nothing particularly scary happens in our neighborhood.
It still hasn’t. Even today, what I felt, was not much than the vibration from a large truck passing by – only weird. Regardless of its insignificance, it was a reminder that we should always expect the unexpected. That being said, I think it might be time to finally put together an emergency survival kit, or at the very least, stock up on gin and tonic water – because when the big one hits, I’m going to need a drink.