Tag Archives: natural disasters

September 19: a terrible echo, a cursed date.

23 Sep

“On the thirty second anniversary of the strongest, most destructive earthquake to ever hit Mexico City in its long, long history, the annual earthquake preparedness drill was held. Two hours later, another very strong earthquake, hit. At least 44 structures in the city alone collapsed within minutes, who knows how many more were condemned after thorough inspections. Who knows how many more were weakened in ways that will not be seen until the next tremor.”

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A sad anniversary.

19 Sep

I often try to forget this date, but this year it’s just been on my mind so vividly…

Twenty nine years ago, just shy of six months after my wedding, I was alone in our apartment when the building started shaking. It was so violent, and so long, that clothes hangers fell to the floor, and I couldn’t walk across the room to the door until it was over. The noise the building made was one of the scariest things I’ve experienced.

It was September 19, 1985 in Mexico City, the deadliest and most destructive earthquake the city has seen in its over 700 years history (the current city was built over Tenochtitlán, capital of the Aztec empire, and the valley has been continuously populated since the first Mexica tribes migrated south somewhere in the early 1300s).

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