Friday, July 7, 2017

Shake Rattle and Roll

Photo by Jennifer E. Miller

Earthquake Excitement

Jennifer E. Miller

There was a little excitement Wednesday night. Not exactly good excitement. Spokane had an earthquake.

Oh my gosh! That's so cool!

No, no it's not! I got the crap scared outta me.

About 11:30 pm Wednesday, July 5, 2017, I switched of my bedside lamp and snuggled under the covers. (T was working.) Usually, the cat makes her way up on the bed after a few minutes and I was anticipating her arrival. I felt something at my feet, which I assumed was my four legged fur baby. Then it felt bigger and stronger. Did kitty fall down? She is geriatric, after all. I called her name only to have the bed roll and shake vigorously. Okay, even young felines aren't capable of this kind of force. I sat up and look around. There was nothing.

My bed glided forward and back, rocking, rolling, and shaking. Remember when hotel beds had vibrating massage, and you inserted a coin in the metal box, and instead of relaxation it felt like a rickety roller coaster? The corners bounced unevenly and the apparatus grumbled and your neighbor would shout "Shut that damn thing off! I'm tryin' to sleep!"

Yes, of course I remember those.

That's pretty much what I was feeling. Except, perhaps, I was the one shouting, "How do I shut whatever-the-heck-this-is off?"

Next, the blinds rattled. My windows are not flush with the wall, but rather are three-inches recessed, making a little a cubby where the blinds sit. Except, tonight they were dancing in their cubby banging against the sides, rattling, as though a gust blew through the open window. The problem: my window was closed tight.

I admit, the rattling blinds rattled me. I immediately thought ghost. G hadn't woken up; was this isolated to just my room? What apparition had I pissed off? And how exactly did I anger it?

After what I estimated to be about twenty seconds, the rock n roll wave stopped as suddenly as it started. At that moment, it dawned on me that all the ruckus may have been an earthquake. I quickly called Todd.

After quickly describing what just happened I said, "I think we may have had an earthquake."

I heard him roll his eyes on the other end of the phone. "We don't have earthquakes here." There was a short pause and with concern he said, "Oh no! Someone probably hit the house with their car!"

Before I could say, "No, that didn't happen. There would've been a single jolt and a bang of seismic proportions," I heard his tires skid, engine rev, and figured he was already on his way.

He arrived home to investigate the damage from the imaginary car versus house accident. What do ya know; he found nothing.

To make me feel better, he checked the house inside and out. There was no evidence of any ghost so I decided it must've been an earthquake. I've never experienced one, but common sense told me I had a rock solid case. T was still skeptical.

"You really didn't feel any tremors?" I asked him.

"No, I did not feel the earth move under my feet. But if an earthquake really did happen, I was on the opposite end of town and driving. Perhaps I wasn't in the correct place to feel the pulse."

He couldn't provide a reason to what cause the earth-shattering movement I encountered. We said our good-byes and he was back to patrol. A few minutes after he left, T called stating that the PD just got word of a 5.8 magnitude quake out of Lincoln MT.


I was right after all!

Now, mind you, earthquakes are uncommon in this region. Therefore, 5.8 is pretty darned big. (Obviously, it wasn't that strong by the time the tremors reached Spokane.) It raises the question of why? I've heard it's a fluke thing. I've heard it's from the fracking in North Dakota. I've heard it's a precursor to a Yellowstone mega volcanic eruption, which experts quickly revert back to the fluke theory. Which leaves me without an answer. The Inland NW is no San Andreas, so whose fault is this?

Gee, I'm not sure.

Me, neither. But I'm sure not going to twist and shout for another episode of shake, rattle, and rolling!

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