Thursday, 22 May 2008

Remembering the Earthquake...

The Sichuan earthquake has taken more than 40,000 lives since 12 May. Many families and homes were left broken overnight.... As I read the papers and watched the news, it brings me back the memories of 921 earthquake in Taiwan.

Staying overseas for some years had me experienced the life that an average Singaporean would not had imagined going though. I still remembered on that fateful night, the four walls shook from side to side and ended with a sudden jerk (like the kind of feeling that you are in a lift and the lift just drop!) It was 1.40am in the night..still remembered so clearly as my hubby was still watching the TV and my baby was sleeping next to me. The hot Sept month and the air con was blasting at full force. Everything just stopped... mins seems like seconds...we were staying on the high floor then...the effect seemed to be greater than those who stayed on the lower floors. Power supply just went off...no way of commuting with the outside world except a small battery operated radio. We did not go out of our building as the surrounding are all high rise...no point...baby was sleeping (yes throughout the shake)...our hearts/minds were racing...what can we do? Through the small radio, we knew that there were a condo that collapsed in our neighbourhood. Many died, and some of them were expats... we were lucky...
In the morning...we drove aimlessly around, traffic lights were not working...it was chaotic...there were still aftershock every now and then...(it was reported of more than 10,000 times). We dared not return to our home in fear of the safety of the building's structure. No point too as there were no power supply and soon too the water supply would cut off. We ended up staying in Sheraton (which was structured like an U shape). Taiwan is well known for the nos. of convenience stores it had, almost every corner you will see one, however on that morning...every store was stripped bare...the only product left on the shelves are soya sauces...we could not withdraw $$ from the ATMs...no power supply....luckily we still have our credit cards...after staying for a week in the hotel, we realised that it would be more economical to buy a pair of tickets back to Sin. Hubby still needs to stay back in Taipei to work...with unstable power supply.....it had been almost 9 years..... the memories.... still fresh on my mind till now. We are so blessed to be Singaporeans...