Sunday, September 10, 2006

I Felt The Earth Move

Last Thursday there was an earthquake. I was in the internet café when everything went wobbly.

My monitor and desk shook and books on the bookshelf went from slanting like this "/" to this "\"

I furtively glanced around trying to catch someone’s eye, as if to say “this is happening, isn’t it ?”, but no one seemed to bother.

I felt totally helpless. There really is no obvious solution. Tornado? Get out the way. Heatwave? Drink plenty and stay cool. Earthquake? Erm…step away from the tectonic plate?

This was to prove useful as a source of questions for lessons later that week – Did you feel the earthquake? Was it bad one? Am I going to die?

The consensus is that Tokyo receives around 20 tremors a year and that this most recent one was quite big. I was also informed that this was a horizontal earthquake, and that it’s the vertical ones I should worry about. My thoughts immediately turned to the tin of Spam I call home and potential escape routes from its third floor.

Fortunately, I had been given a crash course on what to do in the event of earthquake earlier that week after practising the future tense with my Junior High School class:

“What will you do if there’s an earthquake?”

“I will cover my head”

“I will open all the doors”

“I will attempt to be out that day”

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