, ,

Welcome to California! The place where plate-shifting, earth-jolting natural occurrences take place on a daily basis. Two earthquakes this week (in the southern half of California) made the news, and remind me of our introduction years ago to earthquake country.

Last Monday a 1.9 magnitude quake occurred nine miles southwest of Mariposa. Which is sort of in our neck of the woods

And today an earthquake of 4.7 took place in the Los Angeles area.

But wait… that’s just the quake that made the news. Fourteen earthquakes occurred today in the LA area, 94 in the past week, 260 in the past month and 2,678 in the past year, according to earthquaketrack.com(!)


Another website records earthquake activity around the world. California is listed several times a day with minor quakes under 4.0. Hmm…

While living in Southern California, we experienced our share.

I was taking clothes off the line in the tiny strip of a backyard behind our triplex apartment, the first time our family felt an earthquake. Jeremy, almost four years old, was taking his afternoon nap. His dad was at work. I felt the ground move and suddenly understood, the earth was not as solid beneath my feet as I had imagined.

Standing, frozen in place, I watched electrical poles wobble back and forth.

Fifteen seconds seemed an eternity. I think it took all those seconds for me to realize what was happening.

As soon as the shaking stopped I ran inside to check on Jeremy. He met me in the hallway.

Mommy, I didn’t do it. Something was shaking under my bed!

That evening an aftershock followed—just as unnerving as the original quake, but not quite as strong.

One Sunday morning we awoke to a jolt. As the Preacher tried walking through the house to check on things (notice, I said tried), I sat in bed “riding the waves.” An hour later my dad called to see how we were. Another tremor took place right then. The Preacher told him, I’ll let you know as soon as this one’s over!

A couple years later we had just moved to Idaho, and were staying with relatives who lived in a mobile home. While sitting around the dining table talking, the house started shaking. The Preacher and I looked at each other—speechless, eyes wide… his sister watched, totally unaware of the thoughts passing between us.

She said, It’s just the washer going through the spin cycle. What’s wrong?

The shaking—we thought it was an earthquake!

Still living in Idaho we awoke one morning with no electricity. The sun hadn’t quite made its appearance, but the streets and neighbors’ houses were also dark. No lights anywhere in the neighborhood.

My sister-in-law worked as a 911 operator with the local police department, so we called her to find out what happened. After checking, she told us there had been an earthquake in California.

And OUR power is out!?!?

All we could think was, This was the Big One, and California is gone!

After checking further, she learned our electricity connected to the same grid that included parts of California and Nevada.

Thankfully, California was still intact.

Now years later, here we are again in Earthquake Country…