Thursday, March 17, 2011


I awoke two mornings ago to a rumbling. I was buried in sleep, so when I sat up and looked around, the muffled sound coming through my ear-plugs and the strange motion of the bed confused me. Was I dreaming? Was I just experiencing that buzzing sensation that usually accompanies too few hours of rest?

As the fog cleared, I realized that my bed WAS in fact shaking. So, in my blurry state, I thought of the only possible cause:

Shit-me. There is a VERY large, very ANGRY animal under my bed going bat-shit crazy on something…

After 7 or so seconds, everything stopped. Peace returned. I was fully with it by this point. So I began rocking myself violently forward and backward trying to get my bed to shake… you know… to see if I could do what the animal had done.

“Come… on… you… stupid… bed… SHAKE!”


Jesus, man! No Godzilla-cockroach could have done that! No rat either! A grizzly bear, maybe.

(But that was as improbable as the cockroach-rat theory… because grizzly bears do not live in Uganda.)

So I went out on a limb, referenced a bit of 8th grade earth science and some more advanced geological theories I’d recently read at the suggestion of Michelle, and stuck it all together with crazy glue…

EARTHQUAKE!! The spirit of California! Here in Uganda as an alarm clock!

“UHHP ‘N ATTEM’ BOY! SUNZ AWMOST UHHP!” (The spirit has a Franklin County, Virginia accent).

Crazy as it sounds… it put my grizzly theory to shame.


I quickly shot off a text to my safety and security officer with Peace Corps (he had already heard the news). I sent another text to Devon #2 to make sure the whole Rwenzori range had not collapsed onto its side thus flattening her and her college (Nope. Still two Devon’s hanging out in Uganda… not that I’m sad or anything. But it would have made for a great story… *sigh*)

Checking the Daily Monitor yesterday, it looks like the epicenter was north of me by a few hundred kilometers in the Rift Valley near Lake Albert. It seems the spirit of Cali, lacking energy after a long trip, only had it in him (her? it?) to rock a 5.0 on the Richter scale.

No need to worry. I am alive, well and only slightly shaken (sorry… I had to.), but that is better than stirred, right Grandpa? (“Boooooo!” *dodges rotten tomato*)

Mainly I am just impressed with the natural power of the earth.

Thanks for reading!

I love you all (but especially you, Michelle!)


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