yesterday's earthquake in sumatra

I felt the tremor. Yes I did. It was yesterday afternoon (TV1 news said it was at 3.38pm). I was surfing the net. Suddenly I felt my apartment building moving. For a second I thought I was getting nauseas. Then I saw it - my wall mirror swinging from left to right. I definitely wasn't dreaming. My apartment building was indeed moving.

I quickly changed my clothes, ready to evacuate. I looked out from my balcony, no sign of people leaving their units. I didn't hear any chaos either. Well, maybe I was overreacting. I changed back to my shorts and continued surfing.

That wasn't the first time I felt the effect of an earthquake tremor. Remember the huge tsunami that hit Acheh? At that time I was staying in an 18-floor apartment. My unit was on the top floor. It was late at night. I was sitting on the carpet watching TV, when suddenly I felt the floor moving. I thought my mind was playing tricks on me. I got up and went to the balcony. That was when I saw a very strange sight - the balconies below me fractionally swaying from side to side. The building was moving right in front of my very eyes! I thought, should I wake up my housemate and evacuate? Maybe not, maybe I shouldn't make a fuss. Then I went to bed.

After maybe a couple of hours of sleep (at around 2am), my housemate woke me up. She said that she heard chaos outside and people running downstairs, but she didn't know what was going on. So we went outside and saw our neighbour who standing near the lift. She told us everyone's evacuating because they felt the building moving. She herself saw her toilet bowl shook so hard that the water spilled onto the floor.

Having gone through the above experience makes me exceptionally alert of tremors in high rise buildings. Back in EY when the construction of a luxury condominium took place next to the office building, I could feel the tremor when they dig up the earth to insert the piling. But when I asked my officemates, no one felt anything.

Sometimes when I go KLCC, I can feel it vibrates. But that's nothing to worry about as the building is designed to behave that way. Once I also felt vibration in Mid Valley while having a meal at the food court near GSC cinema.

I can't wait to read today's papers about what happened yesterday. There wasn't much info in last night's primetime news, perhaps because the incident was fairly recent. Hopefully there wasn't much devastation to the Sumatra people.

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