They say, animals are the first to identify the natural calamity. “Not True”. Just as I was about to unwind after lunch with a book, our building started trembling. I looked at my Dog sitting near me and he had this ‘please scratch me’ look in his eyes. I looked towards my kids; they were happily running around with the ball. I thought, may be I should stop over eating. It’s causing dizziness. It took me a while to realize that this was an earthquake. I wouldn’t lie, I did panic for a bit as it had been just a few hours since I was reading the news about devastating earthquake in Italy.
I quickly sent out some sms & whatsapps (lol…it’s true) and announced we should go down. While kids and the dog seem to be excited by the suggestion of getting out of the house, my maid wasn’t so keen. She said, “Aami ekhan theke ei dekhbo”. I was startled, this isn’t a snowfall that you will watch from the 6th floor!! “Let’s go down”, I reinforced. We rushed through the stairs. You know, such events bring humans closer. The Aunty from upper floor really came close to tumble me on the stairs while sprinting downstairs. The timely pull from my Dog hustled me to the side or I would had rolled down with her. I knew all those early morning walks to make him poop will pay off some day.
The trembling had stopped by then, but the shaky feeling was still lingering in the minds. Everybody in the complex had gathered in the ground. Some half dressed, and some with purses and bags. Everyone seemed to get the smartphones with them though. While an elderly lady apprised us that Mother Nature is very angry that is why this earthquake has occurred, her daughter-in-law smartly shifted to other group where they were discussing a 4 weeks diet plan. Everyone had their own story of the event and dramatic version of how they escaped death.
I excused myself on the pretext of a call. My kids were nowhere to be seen and the dog by then had pulled the maid to his choice of shrub. I also decided to take a walk. The initial panic and tension was consoled as I saw people talking, laughing and greeting each other. Thankfully, the earthquake was not a major one and everyone was safe and together. I was elated seeing the various flowers in bloom in our complex. Such is the power of life. Walking down the shaded pathways, I felt rejuvenated at the sound of excited chatter of my children playing in the park.