Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Tremor Blase

Earth rumblings have happened so frequently in the last few years that Singaporeans are getting very used to it. Ever since the Indonesia Tsunami that originated in Aceh, Indonesia, Singapore has been experiencing tremors on a more or less regular basis and more often compared to 10, 20 years ago, ever since. This has a lot of do with continued tectonic activity taking place underneath the Indonesia archipelago, as experts had predicted in the aftermath of the tsunami

Yesterday, there was another tremor felt in the southern and central parts of Singapore though there were reports of it in Woodlands in the northern-west corner of the island. I was in a meeting on the highest floor - the 9th floor - of my office building, the tallest building in the vicinity because it stands on a hill, when I felt the tremor. The whole office was shaking and lasted for about 3 minutes or so. Well, one can have giddy spells and imagine the shaking going on in the head, whether it is real of imagined, but there was a water dispenser in the same room. When the water level moves in a pronounced fashion, oscillating from one end to the other and no one is touching nor dispensing water nor moving it in any way, you know that the tremor is not imaginary.

Well, this wasn't the first time tremors were felt in this building. There have a number in the past. Once, I was returning to this building and saw many office staff milling around the ground floor. I had been at another part of the company's grounds. I was told that they had evacuated due to tremors. On another occasion, I was in that same building and felt the tremors. I evacuated.

This time around, my colleagues and I just sat in the room to wait out the tremors. We weren't rushing for the staircases (taking the lift is a no-no). We had gotten used to these tremors. While we sympathise with the people in Indonesia who have been affected seriously by these latest tremors, we are pretty blase over it in Singapore. Sure, people continue to inundate the Straits Times with their shaking experience, but it isn't something noteworthy anymore, until something gives or lives are taken.

Image source: Author: Kevin Connors

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