For the past few days, we have been very agile. And on our toes at the slightest of the sound. Even sleeping we are, ever so lightly. Wellington has had two moderately big earthquakes since Friday and quite a few aftershocks.
Wellingtonians are as surprised as anyone else, because earthquakes are not a routine occurrence here.
When the first earthquake occurred on Friday morning, we were in the office, going about with our regular office activities. And the next thing we know, the whole building was rattling. It takes a moment or two to realise that it’s not just you who is suddenly feeling a little dizzy but it’s an earthquake. Then because you are not used to such an occurrence, you panic, not knowing exactly what to do. In spite of having learnt all your life what to do in case of an earthquake, your mind just freezes for next few moments. Then you watch everyone else ducking under the desks and you follow the suit. You slide under the desk and watch the building rattling, the doors banging, the furniture falling, the files falling and the swiveling chairs sliding across the floor on their own will. 12 seconds later, you gingerly come out from under the desk, and try to absorb what just happened. EARTHQUAKE.
It was scary. Though there wasn’t any substantial damage to property or any casualties, it still was enough to freak us out of our minds. When you are finally able to absorb what just happened, it hits you harder. It could have been worse. It could have been fatal.
Ever since Friday morning, the thought of earthquake hasn’t left our minds for one second. A few aftershocks have followed, and every time we felt the slightest of the movement, we scurried to hide under the table. Just as we were trying to leave the thoughts of quake behind and try and focus on life once again, another quake followed on Sunday evening, this one longer and more destructive than the one on Friday. I was in the kitchen, making coffee and TCG had barely just woken up after the afternoon nap (We hadn’t slept well the previous night, in case we find ourselves in yet another quake). And once again, the house started rattling. Once again, I fumbled, panicked and ran to the living room while TCG motioned me to get under the table. We ducked under the table, and saw the ground throbbing and house rattling for the next 12 seconds. No major losses or injuries apart from the bump I got on my head while ducking under the table.
But in many places around the city, there were a few losses and damages to the property. Our office too suffered some cosmetic damages, a few ceiling tiles came down, the water pipes broke and the things went flying around the empty office. Thankfully, it was a Sunday and we were all at home. The office remained closed on Monday and Tuesday for repairs, but even these holidays didn’t do much to lift our spirits.
We have been told to be prepared and expect more quakes in the coming few weeks. And you can very well imagine how edgy we are, and how alert we are all day.
Apart from this, the past few days have been pretty meh. No inspiration, no interest and no ideas or motivation to do much, leave alone blogging.
So while life crawled back to normalcy today, we are still a little edgy and have the emergency kit packed. But I hope we never have to use it.