It's been a right interesting week in Wellington recently, as anyone local and maybe a few not so local will tell you(okay, not these guys, they got it Awl Rong)
Yes, Wellington got a serious case of the shakes last Friday (first a 5.7 just after 9am, then a 4.4 mid-afternoon) courtesy of some tremors centred a wee way from Seddon. Nevertheless, as the largest metropolitan area adjacent to the hot spot, Wellington got a lot of attention, particularly from our Auckland-based national news shows. "Wellington shakes as it prepares for the Big One" - Actual. Lead-in. Impossible to over-read the meaning of that in an alarmist way, right? I was pretty annoyed by it all.
Still, at 9:25 on Friday morning I was at work high up in our office block set on the waterfront, a large area of reclaimed land partially brought up in the last big quake Wellington had in 1855. It wasn't a comfortable experience, despite our building being regarded as one of the Very Good Ones, and of Sunday's 6.7 quake and subsequent aftershocks only shaking one book off our library shelves. Sunday's jolt I took very well considering, as my earthquake survival plan (be at home with the family) worked wonders. Long may it be available just when I need it.
We were lucky. I was out of the office for two days while the building was being inspected, and some places took longer. Some older buildings lost mouldings and some window glass, but we're kidding ourselves if we think this is as bad as it could get. The Capital will be one of the worst places to be when a major earthquake hits, not only from its inner CCBD population, large number of tall buildings with too much to shed mid-shaking, but also the question of safe exits from the CBD itself. It's estimated that my twenty minute daily commute translates to a walk home of up to three days. I hope I'll be around to manage it, or maybe I don't. I'm not sure.
As far as I know my fellow Wellington bloggers Morgue, Al and Alden all made it through okay. Jamas blogs his experiences here, and pinches a suitable Tori Amos song for the purpose, leaving me with this vintage classic instead. I win!