Japan earthquake brings back memories of California ones I experienced
- Profile in Irish fighting courage - Heffernan’s campaign for respite care for families dealing with fatal rare illnesses such as Batten’s disease
- Senator Schumer says Irish deserve a separate deal for visas because of 1965 shutout - Says “Schumer visas” set to give Ireland 10,500 visas a year for the future
- Prospects for immigration reform bill are 50-50 say the pols privately - House seen as major obstacle as Senate gets closer to a vote
- Chilling testimony before congressional hearing on Pat Finucane death - New hearings told how informer was murdered before he could give evidence
- U.S. Tourism Ireland chief Joe Byrne says goodbye and hello again to massive acclaim - Popular Carlow native led tourist figures to Ireland to historic heights
I was in an earthquake twice and did the wrong thing both times.
It was when I was living in San Francisco in the 1980s. There was always a danger of course, but I never really thought about it.
Until I was sitting at the bar of Ireland's 32 on Geary Street one Friday afternoon when suddenly the glasses began rattling and the floor began shaking.
You never expect the ground to give way underneath you and it was a petrifying moment.
I did exactly the wrong thing.
Instead of hiding under a table or standing in a door jamb I bolted outside into the street, which of course exposed me to falling wires, bricks and anything else that might come down.
The second time I was up a ladder painting a house when the quake hit.
I had an horrific hangover from the night before and felt the ladder shift.
I was sure the hangover was much worse than I had thought and I climbed down and went home.
Only when I got back there did I realize it has d been a fairly significant earthquake.
I thought of those two occasions today as I watched the awful scenes from Japan.
My earthquakes were 5.8 and 6.2 on the Richter Scale, I can only imagine what a magnitude 9 must feel like.
May they all come home safely, the missing and the lost.
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