Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Washington Wednesday: EARTHQUAKE!

Now, I was totally going to do my first Washington Wednesday post on this cool little semi-abandoned park I found a couple of weeks ago when I was walking home from lunch with a friend, but yesterday's earthquake was too good to pass up. I know all of you non-Washingtonians would love to know all about. (Or is it already media'd out?) And, I am sure you want to know if we are okay - we are - and what kind of "damage" we sustained... yes? no?

First, I have to tell you that neither Chris or I have ever felt an earthquake. We both slept through one in Missouri as well as one a couple of years ago here in DC. Obviously both were small compared to this one, although it's not like this one was that big either. Anyway, I was at work when it hit. I work in a 100-year-old building that looks and feels every bit its age. When I initially felt the shaking I honestly thought that I would see someone run past my office door pushing some kind of equipment cart, it was that kind of rumbling. I think subconsciously I knew that no one person and a cart could make my office shake like that. . . anyway, after 5 seconds or so it stopped. I definitely remember my body relaxing and silently telling myself that I was right, it was just someone out in the hall make a racket. It might sound crazy, but my building is really old and some kind of phenomenon like that did not startle me that much, even though it was different. In an old building, everything is a racket. But I quickly realized that the shaking didn't just stop, it paused, because it started all over again. At this point, I knew something crazy was going on, definitely an earthquake, and I jumped out of my desk and ran to my door calling to my co-workers in the offices next to mine. I remember both of them sticking their heads out of their offices and my boss coming out of hers. We all looked at each other in disbelief. "Is this an earthquake?" one of us asked. "What do we do?" I'm pretty sure by this point the shaking had stopped and we all decided it would be best to get out of this old old building. (Yes, I know you are supposed to go under a desk, etc. but this building is old I tell ya!) All of us, and others throughout our building, poured out into the parking lot. Crazy crazy stuff. We all laughed and talked semi-nervously, semi-excitedly. The campus I work on sustained minor damage, but somehow my old building remained unscathed apparently. Although, I did notice some cracks in the plaster walls... but who knows if they are old or new!

Chris felt it too at his work, but he didn't realize until afterwards that it was an earthquake. He was in his parking garage leaving to go to lunch and says that when he felt the rumbling he thought he had hit a car backing up out of his spot! By the time he got out and saw that he didn't hit another car and was still a few feet from it, the shaking had stopped. He works in a nice fancy-schmancy office in fancy northern Virginia so his building and campus are fine. He did feel one of the aftershocks later in the evening though!

Now, since we live close to where I work and there wasn't much damage at work I knew that our house would most likely be fine. However, I was eager to find some "damage" and scoured the house with my trusty camera phone as soon as I got home.

Canned goods toppled off our pantry shelves to the floor. No dents or anything though . . .

Since I am in the process of stenciling our bathroom (post to come next week?), I have a lot of our bathroom stuff on a bookcase in the hallway and only a few items fell off of it. At least that perfume bottle landed on the rug and didn't break!

These books were upright (at least as far as I know). And Good Ole Abe the Bobblehead survived. (Thank goodness, right Danielle?)

Our bathroom mirror fell over. Thank goodness the door frame and facuet caught it because that would have been a mess. Although, I'm not in love with the plain builder-mirror anyway... (btw, it's not attached to the wall, because again, I'm in the process of stenciling. Tune in next week to read what color I picked!)

The most tragic damage was that my coveted candle pillar thingys fell and kinda shattered. You might remember them from my bathroom dilemma . . . *tear*. Any suggestions for repairing/salvaging them? Chris thinks I could take the tiles off, which are unbroken and make new candle pillar thingys, but that might be too much work for a bathroom accessory, yes/no?

Lastly, you might be wondering how our precious kids kitties reacted to the earthquake. While we were not at home to witness anything, we can only suspect from their behavior when we returned over 2 hours later that they were pretty shook up.

I eventually found Luna hiding in our basement after I had heard her little sad "mews." She was very skeptical of coming upstairs and was skittish and on edge almost all night. Here she is trying to decide if she wants to venture away from the basement stairs . . .

Teddy was pretty easy to find. I knew he would try to hide under our blankets.

It definitely took some coaxing by Chris to get him to come out. He didn't even fall for my bribe of treats but instead burrowed further into the blankets.

So, that was our experience with the Washington Earthquake yesterday. It was a bizarrely "fun" experience, not really scary, and definitely not something I will soon forget!

Anyone else have a good better story? Or felt an eartquake before? Isn't it the weirdest feeling ever?!

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