Saturday, March 12, 2011


And now, I'm going to tell you a story about me. Because that's what you do when there's a life altering event affecting all kinds of people living in the Pacific.

When I was 17, I was away at boarding school in Hawai'i. I woke up one morning about 20 minutes before my alarm. I was wide awake and I couldn't figure out why. Then I realized it was quiet. Very, very, very quiet. Now, it was before most people were up, but there were no birds singing. There were no dogs barking. It was silent.

And then the silence was split by a loud, angry sound. The tsunami sirens. I'd heard them before. They tested them regularly. But I'd never heard them like that.

A year before I woke up one morning and said to my roommate, "Did you know there was an earthquake in LA?"

Her response? "Oh yeah, that's old news."

Nope. It had just happened. We walked out of our room and around the corner to the top of the stairs. We could see the TV on in the lounge below. The TV was not allowed to be turned on between 8:00 pm and 3:00 pm the next day. Gathered in the lounge were all the girls from the LA area and those who had family there. We had forgotten to turn the radio off when we went to sleep, so we had heard about it on the radio before we woke up...which is why my roommate thought it was old news.

But this was different.

The campus felt weird all day. The air was strange. People talked in hushed voice. Some of the roads on the island were closed and some students stayed home to help secure their families' things, so there were empty desks in most classes. It stayed that way most of the day. The community seemed to breathe a collective sigh of relief and the cloud lifted when the sirens stopped.

That tsunami hit. I was hoping yesterday's tsunami would be similar. That tsunami, back when I was 17, was only 3 inches tall.


  1. Hey,

    I haven't been commenting lately but I have been reading and I just wanted to say that I've really been enjoying your NaBloPoMo :)

    Also, your reorg pictures are inspiring. We're gearing up for our major fundraising push for Matoto so that's dominating my life right now, but once that's over (second weekend of April), my apartment is getting attacked!

  2.'s been a challenge to write something every day (well, not to write something, just to write something for NaBloPoMo...) but it's been fun...

    Ooooh, inspiring? Thanks! I can't wait to see what you do when April gets here. I've really been enjoying doing it - when I do something to our place - clean a drawer, sort something, put stuff away, I find I feel lighter somehow when I go to bed!

    Good luck with the fundraising!