Photo by Marco Fredes from the the Big picture
As most of you know by now there was an major 8.8 earthquake in Chile at 3:40am this morning. I was here in Santiago at my mother in-laws apartment on the 4th floor, with my wife and two daughters when it struck. I have been in a few minor tremors before to know that the only thing you can do is wait it out in a door way holding on to the frame. I was woken up from the slight shaking and grabbed my oldest daughter out of her bed when it proceeded to strengthen and went to the closest door way where I was met by my wife and youngest daughter who was just born last week. When we all gathered at the entrance to my mother in laws room is when it became really heavy. The power cut out and we were in the pitch black holding on to the wooden frame as the rest of the building shook and seemed like it was floating apart and about to crumble at any given second. With it continuing you to strengthen it began to be difficult to stand up, and my daughter started screaming in my arms while my wife and I were still reaming calm thinking that it had to end soon. The noise of the earth moving, shaking a 5 store brick apartment like is was a toy, along every possible thing in the house was being violently being smashed to the floor is a sound that I will never forget. I was beginning to anticipating the floor giving out or the roof above coming down. With out trying to sound heroic, I was picturing what I could do to try and save the fam or coming to grips of the reality that this might be are time. After three really long minutes of terror wifey and I were starting to panic, but it finally stopped, and we were able to find are way down stairs to safety.
As cheezy at it might sound, experiences like this make you realize really fast what is important in this short life.