That's right, folks. Oklahoma is no longer just the place where the wind just comes sweepin' down the plain. That'd be far too easy. We now have had, in the past couple of years, the following natural disasters:
1. Heat waves. Those go without saying.
2. Ice storms. These occasionally cause us to go for a week or more without electricity, which I don't recommend, especially if you have a deep freeze full of meat or a fish tank full of fish.
3. Tropical storm leftovers from the Gulf. Hermine was the latest.
4. Floods/flash floods. See #3, though these happen more often.
5. Blizzards. Like the one we had last Christmas Eve, which made for a FANTASTIC white Christmas where I didn't actually have to go anywhere or entertain anyone, which is my goal for this year, too. I just haven't worked out how to convince the family that this notion isn't just a notion.
6. Tornadoes. Those go without saying, too.
7. Road construction. OK, OK, so it's a manmade disaster, but it's definitely a disaster. Anyone around here, if asked, will be more than willing to have a good rant about this particular asinine and interminable process.
Now, historically speaking, Oklahoma averages about an earthquake a week, but they're hardly ever felt.
Till this year.
This year alone, I can think of more than half a dozen instances where earthquakes have been felt by humans and hit the news. They're all down near this 'new'(?) fault line near Oklahoma City, so I've never felt them that I'm aware of, though I swear there are times when I feel the couch shake and wonder. But then again, we have train tracks near our house that occasionally cause the windows to rumble, so I can't be sure, and I've never tried to correlate one to the other.
Today, though, was different.
Last night the kids decided they wanted to go spend the night at Grandma's house. M1 picked up the phone and called and asked if they could come and got the okay. Never mind that they'd be missing a trip to the pumpkin patch this morning; Grandma's house well and truly trumped that. I couldn't argue with a trip to see family, could I? So they packed up their bags, they left, and I spend the rest of the evening alternating my time between the couch and the bathroom with the migraine from Hades that caused me to spend a good chunk of time offering the contents of my digestive system to the porcelain goddess. In short, it was a miserable evening. I finally woke up from my mostly unconscious state on the couch just long enough to stagger to bed. I think Oz slept elsewhere, though I'm not entirely sure. I was completely out until about 9 a.m., when all of a sudden I sat straight up in bed, wide awake, and watched the dresser, bed, and TV stand shake.
Now, my first thought was "cat" because Hermes loves to jump up on top of the dresser, which is about 6-1/2 feet tall, and then when he decides to get down, sometimes he launches himself onto the bed. But he was nowhere to be seen, and how could that make the TV stand shake, too? He's a solidly built cat, but he's not THAT heavy.
My second thought was "earthquake," but since I'd never felt one before, I dismissed that, too. Which left me with a puzzle that I didn't feel the need to sort out since a shower was more pressing. Thank heaven for shampoo and hot water and soap.
Anyway, I got myself up and around, released the chickens from their coop, poured a giant cup of coffee and helped myself to a cinnamon roll, and sat down to finish a library book. IN PEACE. It was lovely. Silence is golden.
I finished the book and decided to check and see how Facebook was doing, because I'm an addict and can't live without being connected to my friends. Facebook is an enabler.
THAT was when I realized that it WAS an earthquake that I'd felt. Egad. I can't decide whether to be excited that I actually felt an earthquake or worried that they seem to be getting stronger. Right now, excited is winning. I reported my experience to the USGS on their web site and am now pondering the necessity of going down into the storm shelter to make sure it didn't sustain any damage. It was an EARTHquake, after all. And what, I wonder, does one do when one lives in a land where the earthquake could, in theory, collapse the tornado shelter??