Last night I was sitting alone on the couch, watching TV. Suddenly the entire couch started to sway back and forth, jostling me around like I was on that really bad Buzz Lightyear ride at Disney.
I grabbed the armrest and yelled, “Whoa! WHOA! WHOOOOOAAAA!” as I felt myself being shaken around like a rag doll. Then came the rumbling. A low rolling, thunderous sound like a train was blowing by my house.
“Is it a train?” I yelled and jumped up, eyes wild.
“I’m guessing, no,” said my husband.
“It’s a train!” I insisted, even though the nearest train tracks are about 30 miles away.
Then I did what any normal rational human being would do in this situation–I ran to the front door and opened it.
I’m not sure what I was looking for, but by then, it was over.
“What are you doing?” asked my husband.
“Um….well…did you feel that? Did you feel that? Did you?!”
“Oh, you were hiding under the door frame because it’s an earthquake!”
“Huh? That was an earthquake? Oh, yeah! It WAS! It WAS! OH MY GOD! AN EARTHQUAKE! WE JUST HAD AN EARTHQUAKE!”
Then I proceeded to run around in circles yelling, “Whoa! Whoa! Whoa!”
And my husband says I’m no good in emergencies.
In this article here, my favorite line is from the guy who stated, “It was just strong enough for me to stop eating.” My husband continued to eat his plate of nachos throughout the quake.
Have you ever felt an earthquake before? Do you live in California like my friend and experience them all the time? I’m still not quite sure about this supposed ‘earthquake’. I’m still thinking it was just a ghost train almost crashing into our house.
128 thoughts on “Taking the Last Train to Stupidville”
Scary! I thought it was going to be a tornado since they are supposed to sound like trains. I’m glad this didn’t end with you getting out your front door into a tornado.
Hey, wait… you’re in Maine! You have no business being in an earthquake!
Exactly! No business! It’s just wrong, I tells ya. Blizzards, yes. Freak ice storms, sure.
You’d think I would have immediately thought tornado, because we did get a tornado here in Maine last year, but no–still thought it was a ghost train. My husband? He thought he had put too many clothes into our washer (he’s done it before….)
Ha! I think you are brilliant in emergencies. Almost as good as me, in fact! 😉
We had 2 last year in my area. The first was early in the morning and woke me up. My bed started vibrating, and I don’t have one of those fancy magic fingers beds or anything, so it was unusual. I knew right away it was an earthquake, even though I had never experienced one. For some reason it was just some deep seated knowledge, even though I heard from a bunch of people that they thought it was a low flying plain, a train, or some construction work on a house next door.
Then we had another one while I was at work. We had to evacuate the courthouse and they sent everyone home. We, being us, went to the bar across the street and had drinks. An earthquake happy hour, if you will. It was weird standing in an old asbestos filled building and watching the ceiling tiles shake and dust float down while the floor moved beneath you. Definitely an experience I will never forget, nor would I like to experience again. But as earthquakes go, it wasn’t that bad.
Glad you were safe, and more importantly, that the nachos were not harmed.
I certainly have the freaked-out and babbling nonsense thing down in emergencies, Misty.
As you might have read on my facebook page, Jim and I felt another quake about 12 years ago. I was lying in bed, sleeping when suddenly Jim started shaking the bed back and forth violently. I woke up and said, “I have a headache!” then realized he wasn’t even in the room.
Your story about the asbestos-filled drinks sounds so surreal. I almost went down to our local bar as well to have a drink, but instead just stood on my front porch looking around in the dark like an idiot.
I love this, Dar. I have only experienced on earthquake and I was a teenager. I was at a sleepover with 2 friends when the bed started shaking. Two of us woke up; our fiend slept right through it. It was weird. We don’t have earthquakes in Upstate New York often. But that one made the news.
Isn’t it just the most bizarre feeling? And I forgot to add, quite scary. I was pretty freaked out, to feel the entire house shake back and forth like that. The kids bikes in the garage fell over. They were REALLY afraid. My poor daughter kept asking me if we’d have another one later that night. Hard for her to go asleep. I can’t imagine what terror it must be like in a real strong quake.
Scary! I’m so sorry! It was fun as a teen, but would not fun with the kids.
Lol, come on, you’re totally awesome with emergencies. “Whoa, whoa, whoa!” LOL.
I’ve experienced a couple small ones in Jersey and 1 in Puerto Rico…actually it was like 2 within minutes of each other. During vacation, how rude! THAT one was huge…THAT one scared me and didn’t give me time (possible TMI) to put a bra on under my shirt before I ran outside at 2am. Good times.
Yeah, How rude! (reminds me of that girl on Full House…) I can imagine that one in Puerto Rico scared you enough to not put your bra on. Sometimes bras aren’t necessary.
In Southern California they never have to put on bras during an earthquake – all the boobs are fake and never jostle or bounce one tiny stitch. Perfect Advertisement for Plastic Surgeons out there, too: Get you Earth Quake-Proof Boobies Here!
I want quake-proof boobies. How much do they cost?
One morning we had an earthquake. I was sitting on the toilet. (You’re welcome.) I heard the rumbling and felt the house shake, but I thought it was the dogs running off the back deck. We have big dogs, Darla. It was an honest and obvious assumption. I walked out of the bathroom, and my husband asked, “What on earth were you doing in there?”
Long story short (too late), it was an earthquake.
Oh my god. This comment made me bust out laughing. Between the toilet-sitting and your husband asking what you were doing in there…bwa ha haaaa!!! I loved my husband’s reaction during the entire earthquake yesterday, he actually just STOOD THERE. In the kitchen. Eating nachos. Like it was no big thing.
Bwa ha ah! I was sitting on the toilet when I heard the rumbling…and thought “That’s it, no more Mexican food right before bed.”
Spicy food gives Jim the quakes all the time. Too bad he was eating nachos that night.
It’s just like the movies! I have nothing to relate, all we have is grey and drizzly constantly. We still harp on about the big storm of 1987 over here, it knocked out a couple of trees and some park benches flew across the park a bit, you probably get that when John Goodman sneezes.
All you have is gray and drizzly? My kinda place. I used to live near Seattle. The gloom and doom suits me fine. We still remember the Ice Storm O’ ’98. It was pure hell. No power for over two weeks. Most days it was 20 degrees. Couldn’t take a shower or flush the toilet. Everyone walked around, hyped up on kerosene fumes with really dirty and stringy hair. It was madness.
Sounds amazingly apolocolyptic. Please tell me there were zombies too.
I think we all of us were close to becoming zombies. All the food in the fridge spoiled within two days.
Darla, I was not aware that you are so good with emergencies. 🙂 I’ve few earthquake experiences. But the last time I experienced it, while I was in a southern city of my country. There was a tsunami alert that day. So in every half an hour we could feel the shake of earth. And the funniest part was that (although I do realize there is nothing funny as far as earthquake is concern)- I was so tired that day, I just wanted to sleep once I had my lunch. But every time I used to go for sleep, within next five minutes any one of my close friend used to call me and alert “Went outside of your building, there is another earth quake”. And this whole process continues for next 2-3 hours. 🙂
See, I can never imagine the terror of having a tsunami alert. Makes our tiny little rumbling quake look pathetic. Mainers have it pretty easy.
we have had a few that you would not have stopped a meal for and I live in southern Ontario; my sister experienced one in Ottawa, where everybody went out into the street because they thought their houses were going to crack and fall in on them
The way you handled this emergency was laudable–who says you are not good in emergencies?
Yeah. I had a plan. It made sense. I had no idea if there really was a ghost train. So I wanted to make sure. Also, if the house collapsed, I wanted to make it out into my yard. My husband’s reaction was the bizarre one. Standing there like it was nothing. Pffffft.
Yes, when I lived in Japan and when I lived in California. I do dearly love your response to it all – Whoa, Whoa! Were you commanding the quake or just making a rhetorical statement?
I keep thinking of the song “Feelings…whoa,whoa, whoa feelings.”
I was thinking more along the lines that I was channeling the lovely and talented actor Joey Lawrence.
I was very surprised when I told the earth to stop moving with my WHOAs it insisted on moving even more. Not very polite.
Hilarious!! You guys don’t get many earthquakes up that way, do you?
Not at all, Audrey! This is why it freaked us so much. We are used to two feet of snow and driving on sheets of ice. But earth-shakin’ stuff? For a lot of people here, this was their first quake experience in their entire lives. Hopefully our last.
I’m afraid this sounds like something I woujd do, Darla! I take that train on a semi-regular basis. I’ve never lived through an earthquake.
Whew! Always good to know others take the train to stupidville as often as I do, Kathy.
I am in the earthquake State right now and completely forgot! The last time we were in LA there was a rolling quake. We were laying on the beach and all of a sudden the movement made me feel nauseous. Danny noticed the sand tumbling down to the ocean. Later we found out it was a quake! I also felt one in Indianapolis while on a business trip. It felt like a huge person was walking down the aisle of a restaurant. They are pretty weird!
Earthquakes in Maine? Wow!
Yes! See, for a split second, I also thought it might have been a giant stomping down our street. Stranger things have happened. I can’t believe you saw sand tumbling into the ocean. That right there is a sign of the apocalypse. I would have lost it.
Hahaha! We all had some kind of weird experience and didn’t say anything. Then we went back to the hotel and saw it on the news. Wild!
And to think I was thinking this post was leading to the Polar Express stopping by your door. What a disappointment. For you, I mean. I’d be running in circles too. I don’t handle any kind of emergency well. But for the future reference, I don’t think opening any doors during weather-related emergencies is probably good.
After my reaction, I’m beginning to question whether I should become a nurse. Well, maybe just not a nurse working during earthquakes.
Ah, you’ll know what to do when people puke, code, etc. Or at least you’ll learn to look like you do.
True. and with nursing, looking like you know what you’re doing is more important. wait…maybe I’ve got that backward…
A few years after I moved to the west coast, we had a pretty big earthquake. I was sitting at my computer, with new babe in arms, typing away with one hand, when the house began to sway. I sat there in my sleep deprived, new mom haze, trying to decide if I should do anything. Finally, as it was ending, I went and stood in the doorway to the house. And it was over.
Okay, so at least you also went over and stood in the doorway. I don’t feel so bad now. (Course…I wasn’t severely sleep deprived like you probably were)
If it was a loud thunderous roar with lots of rolling, chances are it was an earthquake. I’m a native Californian so earthquakes are dime a dozen over here. Probably would’ve just continued eating my nachos like your husband. Though I must admit the excitement of a strong jolt never really wears off. No matter how many you’ve sat or stood through.
You sound like a friend of mine who lives in Cali. She was like, oh yeah…we get those ALL the time! Tomorrow’s weather is mostly sunny with an 80% chance of quakes. You guys must think New Englanders are pathetic. But then again, when I lived out west, if there was so much as a single snowflake people would freak out and bust out the tire chains.
It’s gotten much worse now. We freak out when it’s 68 degrees outside. We’re bundled up from head to toe. Scarves, boots, the works!
See, here it’s a balmy 50 degrees today. For us, that is beach weather.
My husband came downstairs and told me that there had been an earthquake near Portland. “Maine?” I asked. “Yeah,” he said. I immediately thought of you, but was relieved that it was just a little one.
We’ve had two here. In the first, which happened in the wee hours, I thought a truck was driving into our garage, which is below our bedroom. I blogged about the 2nd one: http://fiftyfourandahalf.com/2011/08/23/whats-shakin/
Earthquakes are just plain weird. Glad you survived the earthquake and the train. But you know, a train is far more likely than an earthquake in your neck of the woods!
I just read your link and noticed that you also stood under the door. So I’m not THAT stupid? (don’t answer that) It is just plain weird. And really scary. My heart was thumping for a long time afterward.
That’s what you’re supposed to do in an earthquake. The structure there is the strongest.
Damned if I know why. But you are way smarter than you give yourself credit for. Although I will admit that if I were to “go” suddenly, it wouldn’t be so bad to do it with a mouthful of nachos!
Well, now thanks to you, we both know what you’re really supposed to do in these types of emergencies, huddle under the table, and cling to a chair while eating nachos.
You should buy an old school chair with the desk attached. After all, if those could stop nuclear bombs in the 60s, they should be able to stop a little debris from a quake! 😯 (Everybody sing now! “Duck! And Cov-Er!” 😀 )
I remember two small earthquakes when I lived in Michigan. One as when I was in elementary school and all of our fish died. Strange. The other was when I was in college, and I honestly thought a car had crashed into our house.
I love it that nothing dissuades your husband from eating his nachos!!
Your fish died? Weird. Maybe the stress of all the water sloshing around? I didn’t knwo Michigan had many earthquakes. And nothing would ever stop my husband from eating.
I am not sure why, but I adore that you ran to the front door and opened it. I’m just giggling like a loon.
I was in a few earthquakes when I was in Istanbul. The biggest one happened one evening when I was about to have some dinner with my ex at his apartment up on the top floor of a 7-storey building. Just fyi, when you’re up on the top floor, you don’t just hear rumbling and feel shaking, but you also watch walls sway back and forth. I ran to a door frame and yelled that we had to get out of the apartment. He was in the bathroom and apparently couldn’t stop mid-stream, even for swaying walls and shoddy building construction. Brilliant. Now I had to decide whether or not to save myself or be a martyr and die with my boyfriend because he wouldn’t do Kegel exercises.
Luckily, the earthquake stopped. We went downstairs to wait for any aftershocks in the street. Everyone on the block was out there too. One of the stores on the block was a lighting/lamp/electronics store and had a large display of chandeliers hanging from the ceiling. They were still swaying from the quake. Every 5 minutes or so, someone would look at the chandeliers and be ABSOLUTELY CONVINCED that they were swaying harder and start yelling that another one was coming. It didn’t. After about 30-45 minutes, we all started trickling back into our homes.
Now your story deserves a genuine WHOA. I had to laugh at him not being able to stop mid-stream. See, these are the things I’ll worry about now when I’m using the bathroom (see Lenore’s reply above) What if the house collapses on me when I’m on the toilet? What if I can’t stop peeing if there’s a quake? I’d probably pee more if there was a quake, who am I kidding.
I can imagine if you were up on a high floor how scary it would be to see walls sway. Makes me glad I live in a split level ranch.
Terrifying, really! I’m so glad none of you were hurt. Californians sign on for this shiz as the price to pay for near-perfect weather. The rest of us aren’t supposed to have earthquakes.
We had one little one here in Illinois that I remember 25 years ago. I just felt a little shake and went outside to see if a car had run into the house. Hubby slept through it, of course.
Of course hubby slept through it. Typical. I feel really silly for being so scared about such a tiny earthquake, but once it starts, you immediately think the worst. For some time I wondered if this was just a pre-shock instead of an aftershock.
My apartment was red-tagged in the San Francisco quake of 1989 after it made the leaning tower of Pisa look straight. My boyfriend and I had ten minutes to get our stuff out and for some reason we thought it important to grab the huge stuffed Marlin he had caught in Cabo. And a bottle of champagne from the fridge, since all the wine/booze in the cabinets had fallen out and smashed all over the floor. So, here we are standing in the LONG line at the only pay phone in the entire city that worked (trying to call our parents), with our suitcases, fish, and champagne, alternately sobbing at the horror of it and laughing maniacally that we were alive, while apartments all around ours erupted in flames. Yeah.. now that I think about it, it was pretty damn scary!
Oh my god. That is awful. I can’t even imagine the emotions you guys must have felt. Strange what you’ll grab when it’s an emergency. I imagine at that point, you’re just feeling lucky to be alive with your fish and champagne.
I’ve experienced minor earth rumbles – never quite sure if that’s what they are, but suspect it is – where we live in mid-wales, which is not known for earthquakes, and it is always an odd sensation. No actual noise, just this weird sense of things shaking or shifting. Usually when I’m in bed and, no, it’s not that sort of ‘earth moving’! (I’ve kinda forgotten what that sort feels like since I hit menopause! 😉 )
Did feel a different sort of thing from a bomb that someone planted way back in the 1990s I think it was, when I lived in London, England. Was at my dad’s house at the time and everything shook. Closer the blast, people’s windows blew out, from what I recall.
Glad you’re okay, Darla. Hugs.
ha! menopause is such a joy, isn’t it?
But yeah, what is weird is the first quake I experienced had no sound. But this one did. It sounded exactly like a freight train whizzing by. Or an overloaded washer full of clothes. How terrifying about the bomb in London! makes my little quake experience laughable.
Whoops, sorry – forgot to close the italics tag after ‘that’ and before ‘sort of’ and the rest of it. Would you do that for me, please.
No worries, my blog is the typos-R-OK zone.
I live in California, close to the San Andreas fault and one town over (about 10 mintues drive) from a town whose main street was devastated by the 1989 quake. Our wooden house is built on bedrock (the safest type of building material as it flexes a lot, and bedrock is a solid foundation to get through earthquakes intact), but we did lose a chimney at the roofline. Alas, bricks and masonry are about the worst building materials in earthquake country.
I’m glad you and your family got through one OK. They certainly can get the adrenaline going.
Thankfully we live in a wooden house that is only one floor with a lower level basement area. And it did get the adrenaline pumping. I was hyped up all night long. (really, I was worried and so were my kids)
I’ve experienced a few earthquakes, all since living in Vermont. The three most memorable:
The first time it was early morning, I was sleeping, and I woke instantly, thinking the power station had been blown up. It was April, 2002, and we were in Terror Color Code Deep Orange. Things fell off the walls and shelves, and I couldn’t tell if what I felt next were aftershocks, or, in my mind, more explosions. It took news confirmation to know it was an earthquake.
Two years ago, it felt and sounded like herds of elephants had gone running through the house.
Last year, it was a few days before Irene hit, and it felt like I was surfing on waves. I suddenly felt queasy, and couldn’t tell why it looked like everything was moving, I really thought I was having some sort of dizzy spell. It wasn’t until I saw that all the pictures on the walls were askew, that I knew what happened.
And, ummm, of COURSE you opened the door and looked outside!! It’s what any sane person would do, make sure the out there was still, you know, out there! (And if not, well, we’ll just keep it between us that I’ve always done the same thing. ‘K?)
I had no idea Vermont had so many quakes. A herd of elephants is a good description of what I experienced. Amazing you can get dizzy and nauseous from the rolling quake waves. I was sitting when mine happened, if I was standing, (like my kids and husband were) I might have felt it stronger and been more freaked out.
And yes! Thank you. That’s right–of COURSE I looked outside. I think that’s what I was doing…making sure the outside was still intact. Perfectly sane.
We had an earthquake here last August. It was centered in Virginia so it was very mild by the time it reached NYC, but still it was nervewracking for a city of 8 million people in high rises who don’t often feel the ground shake.
I commend you for acting so calm!
I get nervous in a high rise building on a good earthquake-free day. Not good with heights in general. But to feel a quake in one of those? I would faint.
Yeah, we actually felt that east coast earthquake here in Ohio. It first felt like a truck rumbling by – a frequent occurrence here as farm equipment and dump trucks go by. But it shifted to a slow-frequency low-order shudder – I thought one of the cats was sharpening their claws on the back of my chair! (Also a frequent occurrence, despite my better efforts.) When I realised there were no cats, I looked at my wife, she looked at me, and in perfect unison we both said “I think that was an earthquake!”. (Great minds – okay, a great mind and my mediocre one. 😉 )
Sure enough, we checked our various online sources, and confirmed it was an earthquake. In Ohio. Sure, it can happen – but who in their right mind plans for a one in a million event? (Not that either of us are in our right minds – hence our enduring relationship. 😀 )
I had no idea you guys could feel it way out there in Ohio. Was this your first one?
I don’t know if that was my first – and there’s a good reason that’s not as dumb as it sounds. See, from 1989 until 2002, we lived RIGHT underneath a landing pattern for O’Hare airport outside Chicago. When you have 747s going over your house every 90 seconds at 150 feet, at full thrust, EVERYTHING shakes – you, the walls, the ground, everything. One good part – if I had any kidney stones when I moved in, they are LONG gone! 😀
I’ll keep that in mind the next time my husband gets kidney stones. (he’s had two very painful bouts with them already…)
Cool, huh? I already wrote about my earthquake experience. We live in a geographically unstable part of the country–you in Maine, me in Up-up-state NY.
It definitely reminded me of how powerful nature is and how little control we have over things. (I did think it was pretty amazing to feel…)
That’s how I felt. “My” earthquake was 5.8 and I was 7 miles from the epicenter. Very cool!
I experienced an earthquake at work once. I thought the earth moving was from the maintenance guy mowing the school lawn.
Well, I don’t feel so bad now for immediately thinking ghost train. Although yours actually exists.
I’m going to save your “Whoah. Whoah! Whoah!” reaction for my next earthquake experience, complete with running around in circles and opening doors. Is it ok if I flail my arms about, too? I think that will add nicely to the effect.
The last earthquake I felt was summer before last. I was in my chair watching TV, and the chair began whooshing side to side. They were working on my attatched neighbors foundation, sheering it up, and I at first assumed the workers got drunk and were lifting our whole house and juggling it for fun. Realizing it was an EQ, I grabbed my dove out of her cage and ran outside. But I forgot to wail out loud, “Whoah! WHoah! WHoah!” See, that would have been much better.
When I lived in CA, (moved there just 2 months after the BIG ONE in 89) there were lots of aftershocks, once in a bar where all the glasses overhead shook and tinkled like chimes. You all do the same thing – lift your drink (to protect it’s valuable cargo) and immediately start betting on the strength. “4.9” . “Nah. that was a 5.7” “I’m calling 6.1” (everyone else yelling at that guy: “NO WAY that was a 6.1 -we’d all be dead by now!” And nobody buys the stupid guy a drink after that.
Sure, you can flail. Flailing’s good. I wasn’t flailing, but I did walk around in circles, rapidly patting my chest trying to get my heart to restart again. I think I may have been panting, too.
Of course you thought it was the drunk workers lifting your house for fun! I would have thought the same thing. And if you name any emergency, I would think saying WHOA WHOA WHOA! is the way to go. It’s pretty effective.
I thought for sure this quake was a 5.0 but they downgraded it from the original 4.6 to a measly 4.0
Bummer…you haven’t lived to you’ve lived thru a 5.6!
Cool, heard through some of my old Maine contacts that things were-a-shakin’ up your way. Glad there were no trains running through your property, that would have been bad!
maybe not if Tom Hanks was on it and told me I could put on my jammies and bathrobe and go see Santa.
It’s a freaky feeling for sure. I’ve been in two. One small one in Idaho when I was in the 8th grade. And the second, a much larger one, when I was visiting my grandmother at her place in California out in the desert above Palm Springs in the mid-nineties. It was a *freaky* 7.5. I’ll take a tornado, wild fire or hurricane, or runaway trains that one can “see”, “be forewarned of” and make preparations to remove one’s self! 🙂
A 7.5?? That is beyond freaky. Her house must have been moving all over the place. I can take most things, we can stand minus 30 wind chills, driving on sheets of ice…shoveling three feet of snow. But this quake stuff ain’t my bag, baby.
Call me dramatic and a scene stealer but I was in the epicenter of the Northridge quake here in SoCal in January 1994. Not a single item remained where it started. Everything fell off, out, over and across the room. It was loud and the world kept moving for several days, ever-so-slightly or really hard. Awful.
I would think you have every right to be dramatic, Kim. That sounds absolutely terrifying!
I once had a T-shirt proudly proclaiming that I survived an earthquake in Central New York that hit 3.5 on the Richter scale. This was 1983 or 1984. It was no more than a hiccup compared to what hits California. I was on the air at WFBL-radio doing the news when it happened and just stared in disbelief thru the glass window at the DJ in the booth next to the newsroom.
I think the 4.0 we just got is just another day for most people in California. I didn’t know you worked in radio, Judy. What did you say to the audience after it happened? I would have had to censor myself.
I was in radio reporting before I became a newspaper reporter.
I think the DJ and I looked at it each other … like, what was that? Then the board began lighting up. (meaning callers were calling in like crazy to either tell us what happened or ask us if we knew what happened.)
That is definitely a ‘whoa’ moment. When this quake happened here, they said so many people called 911 to ask them what had happened, that it jammed up the lines so real emergency calls couldn’t get through. maybe they should have called 411 instead.
I lived in Richmond, VA when this one hit:
It was a weird double event. Scared the bejebus out of my dearly beloved, he had never been in one before. I had lived for years on the West Coast, wasn’t my first and wasn’t the worst.
Even though our was small, I can admit that I was really honest-to-God scared after it happened. I think the worst thing about it is how out of the blue it is. One second, I’m sitting there watching Seinfeld, the next the couch is shaking me all around.
I did the exact same stupid thing last year when we got nailed in Northern Virginia. Briefly I thought my kids were jumping up and down on the table. Ha! And I almost ran OUT the front door to confer with all my neighbors who were doing the same damn thing . . . until I remembered my three kids. Gah! I felt like such a fool! Glad you were okay!
I feel so much better now for going onto my front porch and standing there in the dark like a moron, El. Even my kids were like, “What are you doing, Mom??”
Last year I experienced my very first here in Virginia. It was an odd feeling, to say the least. The pots on the pot rack started clanging together, water sloshed out of the dishes in the sink, and the room was rocking ever so gently.
I guess it’s hard to believe an entire house can sway back and forth like that in a matter of seconds and so out of the sheer blue like that–very unsettling to say the least.
I’ll never forget when my brother visiting from CA–back when he lived there–came into our kitchen and started laughing. You see–I have some decorative tiles bordering our ceiling just placed up there on a piece of trim. His reaction–still laughing–We could never do this in CA with all the shaking going on.
I was definitely not laughing during this one. More like hyperventilating. After it was over, then I started to laugh a little at how ridiculous I acted. I kept repeating “did you feel that?”
I’ve experienced 2 earthquakes here in MD. They weren’t bad. Just enough rocking to make me think I’m sick or something. Everyone here found it very exciting.
I found my quake very exciting the next day when I realized we all weren’t going to die.
Yep. I’d freak, too, Darla…totally in your camp. I’m worthless in emergencies. Thankfully, no earthquakes in the Gulf coast region of Texas. But we have felt the windows shake when my neighbor’s metal band is rehearsing next door.
Do you hide under the table when they perform? Because I was told that THAT is what you’re supposed to do, NOT go underneath a doorway. Who knew?
(by the way….can you please email me? My dear hubby deleted most everything on our computer and I’ve lost all trace of your email address and I have to tell you something very important…okay, not really, but I just want to talk to you soon.)
You live in Maine and felt “such a whole lot of shakin goin on? I love your image of the train and you choice of word “Whoa! WHOA!” to describe it.
I live in California. I do. Hello! And I’ve only felt an earthquake once – at about 3 in the morning. Next morning at breakfast I said to Mr F: “ohmygod did you feel that earthquake? I’m exhausted, I couldn’t get back to sleep after the windows rattled and shook like that…”
And Mr F said: “What earthquake…?”
Honest. I wrote a blog post about it back when I had three readers… and one of them was my Mom.
Oh, Mr. F. Typical man. (shaking head) Can’t live with them, can’t wake them up to save their lives.
I also love the fact that when I’m faced with imminent danger, the only word that comes to my mind is WHOA.
If I am suddenly startled, like someone jumps out from behind a door and yells BOO at me? I will always always yell “Jesus!” I don’t know why, but I do. And I’m a very religious person and really respect Jesus as a man, but I still yell that out.
Wow. The very first day I lived in California, we went to the beach and there was an earthquake. It was so bizarre! I mean, we were just laying there on the sand and the earty started shaking. It was an ominous beginning to our short-lived stint in California. Back to the tornadoes of Ohio for me!
Your first day?! Bummer! I have never been to California, and now I’m having second thoughts about ever going.
I was sitting on the beach when the earthquake of ’11 hit the east coast. no noise but my beach chair started rocking back and forth on it’s own. a bit spooky. half the people left the beach convinced a tsunami was sure to follow…please.
Yeah. Tsunami? Please! If I had a nickel every time I thought that, I’d have zero nickels.
Glad that all is well now. We used to have small quakes rather often when I was a kid – guess the earth was still cooling and it finally settled down. Tehehe. But seriously, last year’s aftershocks from the Virginia quake were the first we had experienced in a while and my son had to tell us about it because we were out of town.
yeah. This brings up a good point, Renee. The earth. What is her deal, really? I mean, you’d think she’d be all done growing up, but no…always with the moving and shaking and shifting.
We used to have earthquakes all the time in Alaska. We actually lived on a major fault line, which my dad once casually mentioned could open up at any moment, resulting in our house falling deep into the earth. I don’t think he knew I could hear him, but you better believe I had a major fear of earthquakes from that moment on. I might actually write a post about a childhood earthquake incident soon…
Oh, aren’t dads great? They say something as an afterthought and leave you with nightmares for years afterward. My dad used to tell me asparagus tastes like chocolate. I still will never forgive him for getting my hopes up like that.
And please, write that post!
Ha! WHOA D Pants! I experienced my first li’l Jersey earthquake last year, and I was pretty freaked out, too – I just couldn’t believe that that’s what it was!
Maybe it was a train…
Either way I could go for some nachos right now.
Don’t let everyone push you around! Stick to your guns! It was a train, damn it!
There was one earthquake of any size once when I was in Portland, and when it hit I was in a solid marble room and felt nothing. Lame.
Is it a bad sign that the only person that is backing up my ghost train claim is a man probably semi-delirious from sleep deprivation?
Darlin’, I wrote a poem about a guy with a flaming skull on a motorcycle from Hell. If THAT ain’t support for the “ghost train theory”, I don’t know what is! 😀
What the hell? Earthquake? Are you kidding me? I love that you thought it was a train. I go the complete other side of the crazy spectrum. I’d be putting money down on the apocalypse.
Your husband is my hero! Way to keep your head about you, Jim! Nachos will always keep you safe.
Oh no… I was totally going down the apocalyptic route. That was the next stop. First stop–ghost trains. Second stop–eating nachos under the kitchen table. Third stop–apocalypse.
They’re weird, aren’t they? I mean, I guess they’re weird if you live in an area where they don’t happen that often. We’ve had a few minor tremors in NY, but the only one I felt was about 30 years ago. Even though I had never experienced an earthquake before, I knew that was exactly what it was. It’s a very odd thing, isn’t it? Glad you had just a minor quake!
It is surreal. And so out of the blue. You forget that the earth is capable of suddenly moving and shaking you around. Maybe because most of my entire life, it doesn’t. Hard to wrap your mind around it.
Supposedly we get earthquakes all the time in Victoria, but I have (thankfully) yet to feel one myself. Everyone here keeps talking about “The Big One” that is overdue to hit Vancouver Island, but I prefer to plug my ears and sing La La La! whenever that topic comes up in conversation…
Can’t blame you there, Dana. I suppose the East coast is due for a ‘big one’ as well. But I’m sure climate change will get us all long before that happens.
Pingback: The Impersistence Of Memory | The Byronic Man
Came over to read this thanks to Byronic Man. My first earthquake experience was a doozy- we were in the 9.0 earthquake in Japan in 2011. I was going to say first and only, but it was followed by thousands of aftershocks before we left five days later, so I guess I can’t really say that. While it was happening, it was “this is so cool” because we’re from earthquake-free country (Minnesota) but after we saw the details of what happened, we realized it wasn’t such fun after all.