I’ve been in California for seven months, and I finally felt my first earthquake.

What’s funny is that it didn’t feel like what people told me it would. In fact, it happened twenty minutes ago, but I wasn’t sure it was an earthquake until just now, when the USGS map updated. More than anything, it felt like a reeeeeeeally big gust of wind came along and knocked my building a bit sideways, like when you’re in a car and a semi goes whooshing past — but I seriously doubt any gust of wind is big enough to make this entire row of townhouses rock like that. Sure enough: earthquake. 4.3, ESE of San Jose.

I know I’ve experienced a billion and one earthquakes since coming here, but none of them big enough that I noticed them. Now I have. I can mark that off my checklist.

0 Responses to “FINALLY!”

  1. amysun

    Congrats, you have now had THE Californian experience!

    And yes, the smaller quakes tend to feel kind of like what you felt. It’s the bigger ones that get more … interesting.

    • Marie Brennan

      People have usually compared it to a train or a really big truck rumbling past; I was expecting something more like that, rather than the briefer (but more noticeable) smack.

      • amysun

        Hmm, I suppose that might also be a valid comparison, but most of the ones I actually notice are more like what this one was. For the bigger ones, everything shakes *a lot* more, back and forth, and there are more sounds, both of the shaking, and from the shaking (ie dishes rattling, etc.)

  2. Anonymous


    San Jose Earthquake: Magnitude 4.3 points.
    I think this is a must see!

  3. mastergode

    You know, I had never in my life experienced an earthquake until I spent the summer in Tokyo.

    I woke up in the middle of the night to a sort of swaying. I was being shaken in my bed, and felt like my room was swaying from side to side. Having never exprienced an earthquake before, I had absolutely no idea what was happening. I was half asleep (or perhaps more like 3/4 asleep), so I just put it off to a dream and fell back to sleep. Which is great, because if I’d been awake, there’s no way I would’ve gone back to sleep afterward. I would have spent the whole night freaking out that my building was going to collapse.

    The next day, I’d forgotten all about the experience. Then I heard someone say that there had been an earthquake the night before, and suddenly it all came back to me, and it hit me that I’d been in my first earthquake and hadn’t even known it at the time.

    It was just generally very strange.

    The earthquake in question was 5.5 on the Richter scale.

  4. squishymeister

    dude, what people are you talking about? I *ALWAYS* tell people it generally feels like a large truck driving by. 😛 and is often mistaken for such.

  5. erdedrache

    Heh. I happened to be at the bank and saw news of the quake on CNN’s breaking news update.

  6. c0untmystars

    I didn’t feel my first earthquake until I had been living here for several years.

Comments are closed.