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The Business Trip To Kalifornia


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I was working in an SF hospital when Loma Prieta hit. There was a huge incinerator smoke stack about 8 stories high in service core of the building that we all used to joke about which way it'd fall come the Big One. The building starts shaking and every eye went to that stack outside the window. No dice. Rock solid. Then we went down to the ER for disaster management. We got one person walking in with a broken arm all evening.

It was worse in the East Bay with the highway collapses. One surgeon I know still has nightmares about what he had to do to extract a kid trapped in a car behind his deceased parents with the upper deck of the highway threatening to finish falling.

I have a healthy respect for Mother Nature.

I heard about that guy. In my book he is a hero and you can tell him so. I doubt i would have had the courage to go where he went and do what he did. Hopefully in the same situation i would just do what I had to.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I was visiting a friend in California one day in the 70's and was walking along the sidewalk and came to an intersection. I put my foot out to step off the curb and... the curb moved! I had to take another step to get to the street.

My wife was born in California near San Francisco. For a while we lived in Santa Clara and we were there for the "World Series" quake which sent a "wave" through our house and made it impossible to move for a few minutes.

On a business trip to Texas, for the first time in her life she encountered the huge thunderstorms accompanied by lightening that are common there. I was at home in Oregon (yes... we had moved by then) when she called me on the phone asking me what to do. I said "how long is it between the lightening flashes and the sound of the thunder?" She waited a moment to take a count and said "about a second or so." I said "Are you near a window?" She said "yes." I said "Do you see a large funny shaped cloud that seems to touch the ground?" She said "Yeah... so?" I said "hang up the phone, get away from the windows and go in the bathroom and close the door.... you're about to be hit by a tornado!"

It did pass by without actually hitting her hotel though.

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