Thursday, October 26, 2006

Survival

This is our fifth day back in the rain, grey skies, and cold of Indiana in October after a trip to Maui, the island named for the demigod who pulled the Hawaiian islands up from the sea with his fish hook, lassoed the sun to make the days longer, and raised the vault of heaven so humans could walk upright. We are survivors of the earthquake of 2006, even though we didn't go to Crazy Shirts and buy T-shirts to prove it. On Sunday, October 15, at 7:07 AM Hawaiian time (now that Indiana is finally on daylight savings time, Hawaii and Arizona are the only states that never change their clocks), the earth, and our vacation rental house shook. A quake registering 6.7 on the Richter scale occurred off the coast of the Big Island. It felt like a 300 pound offensive tackle was running up the stairs at first, but the rumble and shaking intensified, and it didn't take long till we knew it was an earthquake. I am reminded of Kurt Vonnegut's description of the bombing of Dresden as he described it in Slaughterhouse Five: The giants walked and walked. My faultering memory is probably incorrect, but that's how I recall him describing the sensation American prisoners of war felt as they waited out the Allied bombing in the basement of a slaughterhouse. It was like giants walking overhead. Look it up and let me know if that's what he really said. I'm too tired to do it right now. Fortunately, tsunamis don't occur unless the intensity of a quake is greater than 7. Other than losing power for a couple hours, we were unaffected by the quake. Why? Dumb luck. Aloha.

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