Shake & Quake

Back in February when I was first asked to move to California, nobody told me that California was prone to earthquakes.  When I was applying for my visa in August, I was still not informed and finally after moving no one told me until… until this happened.

The day Leona learns that California is preparing for 2012 doomsday.  FML

Continuing on my lovely day at the SSN office (read part one here), I finally made my way into the waiting room. The Social Security Number waiting room is quite similar to a walk-in clinic’s waiting room – you try not to touch anything, avoid any eye contact, and ignore it if someone makes any sudden jerks or movements toward you.

I tried my best to follow my rules but being as bored as I was and too afraid to take out any electronics, I couldn’t help but people watch.  There was a family reunion that happened behind me when a teen bumped into her grandparents at the office.  A man was reading a book and playing with his iPhone.  But my favorite of them all was the Lil Wayne wannabe sitting in front of me with a goalie mask on his head and blasting music on his phone.  Yup, they thought I was more sketchy then the scary mask man.

Around 45 minutes into my wait, alarms went off in the building.

Ladies and Gentlemen, we are experiencing an earthquake.  Please remain calm.

O.M.G.  There is an earthquake.  Crap!  California has earthquakes?  I hope we don’t have to leave the building, I don’t want to lose my spot in line.  Why isn’t anyone else panicking?  Why isn’t anything shaking?

A few minutes later…

Ladies and gentlemen, that was just an earthquake drill.  I repeat an earthquake drill.  If it was a real earthquake, we are committed to ensuring your safety.

Earthquake drill?  Yes.  California runs earthquake drills.

When I finally wrapped up at the SSN office, I headed back to the office.  Around lunch time, my office did an earthquake drill.  Based on my knowledge of earthquakes from movies and television shows, I thought you were suppose to stand in a doorway and hold tight.  But today’s earthquake survival method teaches you to stop, drop and roll.  Oh wait, sorry, that’s if there’s a fire.  Stop, drop, and cover.

Drop, Cover, Hold On?

Within a span of 4 hours, I went through 2 earthquake drills and luckily I did because 2 hours or so following my second drill, I experienced my second earthquake ever (my first was in Louvain-la-Neuve in the wee morning hours but I was sleeping so I can’t confirm if it was an earthquake or if I was just groggily and confused from the cercle the night before).

The second earthquake was pretty intense.  It came out of nowhere and all of a sudden things were shaking.  I was pretty excited for it but my housemate – a lovely Californian native – jumped out of her seat, freaking out.

Neither of us stopped, dropped, or rolled covered hold on.

Marci, my housemate, kept squealing,




I couldn’t understand why she was freaking out.  I’ve seen snowstorms do more damage and I’ve never had to do a snowstorm drill, let alone twice in a day.

I soon found out why she was freaking out.

California hasn’t had a massive earthquake in a long time and the state is overdue for a huge, state shattering, end of the world 2012 style earthquake.

This would have been a nice to know before deciding to move to San Francisco.  After a few nights of restless sleep because I’m now terrified of the ground splitting apart below me and swallowing me whole, I’ve managed to put on a brave face and have even started brainstorming what I would put in my earthquake kit.

Leona’s Kit for Earthquake Survival:

  1. Water.  Because SF is surrounded by an ocean and Cast Away taught me you can’t drink salt water.
  2. Go Bag.  This website told me to.
  3. Food.  Canned, non-perishable food to eat, to barter with, to bribe, etc.
  4. My Swiss Army Knife.  To open my canned, non-perishable food with.  (SSN Office, I don’t seem as sketchy now do I?)
  5. iPod/iPhone.
  6. Cash.  So I can hitchhike out of California and get my butt back to snowy Canada.

Am I missing anything from my survival kit?

So this ends my two part saga:  The day Leona goes into a government building with a Swiss army knife and The day Leona learns that California is preparing for 2012 doomsday.  FML.

Hopefully, my life becomes less of a sitcom once the SF learning curve plateaus a bit.

  1. LOL “I’ve seen snowstorms do more damage and I’ve never had to do a snowstorm drill, let alone twice in a day.” I love it.

    7. Martini mix? You’re shaking anyway.

    • Martini mix? So smart! I’ll need a strong drink to combat the strong earthquake!

    • Leigh Anne
    • November 4th, 2011

    I would like to see bobblehead leona in an earthquake!

    Real Leona: OMG an earthquake
    Bobblehead leona: (headbobs, rocks the earthquake out. its like she was made for this!)

    • You’ll want to keep bobblehead leona if the real leona falls through the earth because of an earthquake.

    • Cecilia
    • November 9th, 2011

    tell me how many bottles of water can you carry at one time?

  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: