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January 23, 2018: What’s Shaking

Last night, before we went to sleep, Pete read to from the book The Day Trees Bent to the Ground, which was compiled by Janet Boylan and edited by Delores Roguszka. It’s a collection of individual first person accounts by those who were affected directly by the 1964 Alaska earthquake. This is an excellent book. The vignettes are also quite short, so Pete is not committed to a long evening of reading nor I to a long evening of listening.

I was falling asleep as he was concluding a story in which a parent goes around the house, drawing his wife and children to the center. He went out into the hallway to get one child and was thrown about some. The children and parents all got down on their hands and knees in the living room. The shaking was so bad they all could not stand.

I was dreaming about this when Pete said loudly “earthquake.” I immediately came to consciousness and felt some strong jolts then a series of tremors. I remember saying “This is going on a little too long.” We have had small quakes in the past, none that I recall have lasted this long. Most have been at night.

I remember thinking, this is not the big one. The big one is going to be like those in the book – we will get tossed around and the books will come flying off the shelves. And the ground will shake and trees will bend to the ground.

I awoke to the sound of the phone ringing. My dad’s wife Carol called – I am reasonably sure that she got the news about the quake and wondered if we were okay. I went and took care of the horses. When I came in, my sister Eleanor was on the phone – she wanted to know if we were okay. A short while later I got an email from my friend Rae McFarlane in British Columbia. She wanted to know if we were okay. Then I went and looked at the news on the front page of the New York Times. There was a very well-written compilation about the quake from a number of reporters.

The quake occurred at 12: 31 a.m. What amazed me was that this hard news story was written and posted so quickly. The reporters had to have worked well into the night on it. And our family members and friends knew that it was a 7.9 magnitude quake before we did. And they knew that those who live in low-lying areas had to move to higher areas because there was a danger of Tsunamis.

Pete and I talked about the quake at breakfast. Note the photo – his and hers breakfast skillets. He had fried eggs and I had scrambled eggs. Our collective conclusion was, that was really something.

Otherwise, it was an uneventful day. Temps in the low teens and snow flurries most of the day. Rode Raudi and ponied Tinni. Both did really well. Then I did agility with Raudi and Hrimmi. I am concerned about the earthquake situation because we live near the Castle Mountain Fault, but I am not at all worried about tsunamis. We live at the foothills of the Talkeetna Range, so we are safe. And if we did have to move, we’d just saddle up the ponies and head up the bench (which is the Castle Mountain Fault).

Next: 24. 1/24/18: Winter comes out of her Hibernation

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