Monday, May 18, 2009

I feel the earth move under my feet...

We had an earthquake last night. A big 'un too! It was a 4.7, centered about 10 miles away from us.

Time: 8:39pm
Place: maison a la Redondo Beach
People: T and I

M was out to a movie and B was working, so we had the house to ourselves. I was sitting in bed with my laptop, reading emails (btw, my DQP got approved. Yaaaaay! If you want to read a 30-pager on exceptional human experiences, email me. yeah right) and T was in the bathroom down the hallway, brushing his teeth.

The town houses that we are in one of have garage doors under each unit, and when they open, the whole thing slightly trembles. Some are also louder than others, and right before the earthquake, there was a horrifically loud, screechy, rumbly garage door episode right outside the open window. T poked his head in to ask what the heck that was, and I replied that it was only a garage door.

The garage door closes and all is quiet...

...for 1.8 seconds.

Then, the shaking starts. At first, with my attention in my email and my body prepared for garage door shaking, I though nothing of it, but when I felt an unpredictable lurching shaking and heard the house groaning and shuddering around me, I knew.

And it was a big one. Lots of little shakes punctuated by big shakes - not up and down, but lateral, so it's hard to keep your balance.

I shoved the laptop away, and squeaked out T's name.

He was already headed for the bedroom and called out to me to come over and join him. We stood in the doorway, him with one arm around me and the other braced against the doorjam, both of us trying to keep our balance and wondering when it was going to stop, and if it was going to get worse.

note: They've been predicting "the big one" for awhile now. This is because there haven't been many earthquakes for the past several years, and the pressure of the plates moving against each other (which is what causes earthquakes in the first place) hasn't been relieved like it should have. That spells a big reliever of pressure on the horizon, or in other words, a huge building-tumbler earthquake. That's what has everybody on edge and us wondering if it's going to get worse as we stand there in the doorway.

Finally, after a few more shudders, it's over. I mention to T that we're upstairs (in case it's not really over and the building decides to collapse or something, and he agrees and asks if I want to go outside. Of course! So we both quickly survey the room, seeing what we really need, and I grab my purse and him a messenger bag that he usually takes with him, and we high tail it out of the house.

Yeah that was mostly it. We stood on the front patio for about ten minutes, hearts racing, agreeing that we both hoped the motorcycle driver who just passed was at a stop sign or something during the quake because driving on a motorcycle would certainly suck at a time like that, then we went inside.

The hanging light over the table was still swaying.


1 comment:

Stephay said...

I always thought they felt like when a freight train rumbled by the house I grew up in that was right near the tracks.... In fact I slept through the first earthquake that happened not long after I moved to Cali. My roommate was like, you didn't even feel it? I was so accustomed to the trains that I didn't even notice.
Today that might be different.

I'm glad you were both ok.