From Boats to Trains

Very weird. For the second time since we’ve lived down here, I felt an earthquake. Now, I know to old pros out in places like California, this was small beans. But to a midwesterner like myself, any earthquake is big news.

The first one, a couple of years ago, was very subtle. I don’t know if it was the difference between being on the ground level (then) and being on the second story (now), but the first one just felt like trying to walk on a boat. The ground kind of rolled under me for a few seconds, and then it was done. In all honesty, had that quake not been confirmed by the news, I could have easily thought I was crazy, because very few people I knew felt it, and I could have easily passed it off as a moment of dizziness.

Last night’s earthquake was a little different to me. I’m sure part of it was because I was on the second floor of our house, and part of it was because it woke me out of a dead sleep, but this one was more jarring. There was no rolling this time, only shaking, and a lot of shaking. The windows were shaking, the walls were shaking, the bed was shaking (at first, groggy as I was, I thought it was a little girl shaking the bed, trying to wake us up), and my lamp wouldn’t stop shaking, even after it was over. The vibration must have been enough to set the lamp shade off at a weird angle, and once it started, it couldn’t stop.

Anyway, the fact that it woke up my husband, who I swear could sleep through a tornado, assured me that there was no way I was imagining it this time. When your mind is trying to sort out what it going on, it’s fun the possibilities you go through. Thunder aftershock? (No, not raining yet, but we knew rain is on the way, so it seemed like a viable possibility…) Train? (But we’re too far away from the tracks for that kind of shaking!) Low flying aircraft? (I’ll never forget the way the Sky Fox used to rattle our windows in our first apartment!) Explosion? (Not really sure where that one came from, but when you’re sleepy, your mind imagines all sorts of things.)

I think I should get an award for being the first one to properly identify the cause of the movement, but I suppose no such award exists. Funny, it never occurred to me to call the police department, but word on the street is that their switchboards were quite busy with calls from inquiring residents, trying to figure out what had just happened. I guess I just figured once my brain landed on earthquake, that’s what it was, and it was only a matter of time until the news reported it. (The nonchalant way my husband went right back to sleep also convinced me that it couldn’t be too serious, even if I was up for the day at that point!)

At any rate, I don’t see myself moving to California any time soon. 5.2 is enough excitement for me!

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