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May 19, 2005

Hey, what's all that shaking?

One facet of living in Tokyo is the idea that it could all end in 90 seconds. I am talking about earthquakes and they happen much too often here for my comfort. These kind of news stories are fairly common.

I should be used to it...I grew up in California, which has its fair share of quakes. But I am not. If I was, I might not work and live in high rise buildings (15th floor for both).

The building I live in is supposedly built to withstand earthquakes, so I should rest assured I will survive when the "big one" comes (more on that in a minute). So far, it is still standing, which is a good sign. But it groans and creaks as it shakes - that could be the worst part. And it continues to rock back and forth for a good 30 seconds afterwards (that's the second worst part).

Anyway, a major earthquake strikes Tokyo every 65-70 years and the last one was in 1923...you do the math: we are overdue. So, everytime the earth starts shaking, you have to wonder if our time is up. The government says a major quake in Tokyo would kill 13,000 people. I hope that's the worst case, but I think most people assume it would be more. As you can see, every day is an adventure here.

Posted by Kirk on May 19, 2005 06:42 PM