I Felt the Earth Move Under my Feet

by torontogirlwest on October 31, 2012

Hello Friends:

This weekend was a bit crazy here in the Coastal Casa!!! In fact, I felt the earth move under my feet!!!

It was Saturday night, shortly after 8pm. The Husband and I were both doing some work at our dining room table. We had been sitting there for quite a while and frankly we were starting to get a little tired. The Husband had just gotten up briefly to get something from the bedroom, when I heard the sound of the vertical blinds in our condo clanging against each other. None of the windows were open so I quickly looked up, only to realize that every single set of blinds in the apartment was swaying pretty dramatically.

This is the part where I should tell you that I grew up in an area of El Salvador the Mayas used to call “The Valley of the Hammocks” because, like a hammock, the ground was so unstable. During my time in the old country, I experienced more tremors than I could count and even survived one really large earthquake that saw the earth open up at my school. Back in those days, if I thought I felt a tremor, I would look to a TV antenna to check if it was moving. Here in Vancouver, I looked instead to my light fixture in the dining room. And sure enough it was swinging back and forth like someone had pushed it to get a running start.

Quickly, I got up and told the Husband it was an earthquake and we needed to get out. Despite the fact that we could both hear the obvious creaking brought about by the shaking, he didn’t want to believe it and suggested that it was just the wind. Of course, I quickly replied that all the windows were closed and we promptly made our way out the door with Daisy.

Then came the dilemma of how to get down from the 24th (!!!) floor. I wasn’t entirely sure that if we took the stairway, that we wouldn’t get caught behind some locked door on a random floor. I’m not entirely sure why, but I took a gamble that the shaking wouldn’t get worse and we took the elevator down.

Crazy thing is, nobody else evacuated the building. Not a single soul!!! To me that’s borderline insane, particularly given the fact that the eleven floors above us would have felt the shaking a lot more than us.

Being smarter than the average bear, we waited downstairs for a couple of hours (and through one aftershock) before eventually returning to our beautiful but occasionally unstable perch in the sky.

In the end, the earthquake ended up measuring a 7.7 on the richter scale, with an epicentre in Haida Gwaii – halfway up the BC Coast to Alaska. Miraculously no one was injured, despite the severity of the shaking. I guess that’s the advantage of isolated remote communities.

I will say one thing – the earthquake made me realize how incredibly unprepared I am for an emergency situation. And the worst part is, I should know better! So expect to see an upcoming post on how to put together an emergency preparedness kit.


The 31st of October

Mom Portrait

Today is the 31st of October, and for me this day will always have a particularly special meaning.

Not because I will dress up or get candy. In fact, none of those things will happen. But instead, I will be celebrating the birth of the woman chosen especially by God to be my mom!

Baby and Mom

My mom is easily my biggest supporter. No single person has had as much of an influence on whom I am today, as her.

Mom and Daughter Wedding

The truth is, I’m not sure what I ever did to deserve a mom like mine. But today on her birthday, I pray that she may have a long life full of joy, wealth, health, and all of her heart’s desires!!!

Happy Birthday Mom!!!

Question: Have you ever been through an earthquake? Where were you? Did it scare the living daylights out of you?

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Coco October 31, 2012 at 9:20 am

Glad to know you are safe. Earth quake can be very scary. We had one last year but I didn’t feel it at all since I was driving.

Happy birthday to your mom.
Coco recently posted..journal: sleep begets sleep? not always


torontogirlwest October 31, 2012 at 1:04 pm

Thanks Coco! :)

And yes, it’s scary. Mostly because you keep on expecting it to happen again! lol


Samantha Angela October 31, 2012 at 12:05 pm

Crazy! I heard about the earthquake. It’s a good thing that no one was hurt.

Is there an evacuation procedure in your building when there’s an earthquake


torontogirlwest October 31, 2012 at 1:04 pm

You know, that’s one of the things I have to inquire with our property owners. I don’t know that there’s anything formal beyond an instruction to use the stairways to evacuate. All of a sudden, I’m thankful I’m not higher up still! :S


Marianne November 1, 2012 at 3:58 pm

Not gonna lie – I’m not overly concerned about earthquakes, even though I’ve lived in an earthquake zone my entire life. I have only ever felt one when I was still in Victoria – the building shook for a bit, then stopped. We all looked at each other in our offices, figured it was a small earthquake, and went back to work. All of the other tremors we’ve had in Vancouver I have NEVER felt, including the one on the weekend.
Marianne recently posted..Sweet & Sour Pineapple Shrimp


Toronto Girl West November 1, 2012 at 8:09 pm

I remember only one tremor in Victoria. It literally felt like someone pushed my couch once. And then it was over.

This was way different – if you had been in my casa at the time, you would definitely feel more concerned! Freaky pants!
Toronto Girl West recently posted..I Felt the Earth Move Under my Feet


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