When the land shakes

It was at 18:59 that I came out of my house with the intention of going for a walk. The dogs had just been left home after their walk so the wife and I were getting ready for our own. That’s when the weird, rhythmic “clank” sound started and a nearby neighbor ran out of the house barely handling his Golden Retriever.

Whoa that dog almost escaped his house!

As someone who was small dogs I’ve developed an instinct to stop on the spot when I see big dogs loose, so I stopped. And that’s when I noticed a lot of stuff in the span of a second: the dog wasn’t running out in a playful manner, more than one family was coming out of their house, the clank sound was getting stronger, car alarms were going on all around me, and – perhaps most importantly – everything was shaking. We were experiencing an earthquake.

We ran back into the house, each one of us carried a dog and ran out. It was the longest minute. Light flickered while a distant power transformer exploded, and the clank of light post cables eventually stopped. Power came back almost instantly, and people started turning to their phones to call loved ones and see if social networks had any information. We quickly found out that the center of the quake was in a province up north, but not much else.

It was a stressing night. While my zone shook strongly, damages were almost null. There were a few damages to structures elsewhere. The northern provinces, where the epicenter was, are devastated. There’s news about it everywhere. Last official numbers put the dead toll at around 480, the injured at over 2000… and the numbers will rise.

I am, thankfully, ok. So is my family. Many thanks to all those who got in touch with me via social media to ask me how I was and to express their relief that I was ok. I couldn’t react much beyond “liking” your tweets, but I was very happy.

My country has much to recover from, and it will be hard to see it struggle to get back on its feet. But its people have risen, and we all have to follow.

“Come on, let’s rise!” – Cartoon by Bonil (@bonilcaricatura), Diario El Universo.

2 thoughts on “When the land shakes

  1. I’ve lived through several hurricanes, but never an earthquake. I can’t imagine that kind of experience. I’m glad that you and your family are safe, and send best wishes to your country for recovery!


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