We have been receiving a lot of phone calls and emails from worried friends and family. Rest assured, we're fine. The earthquake that struck central Italy this morning woke us up, as the building moved and the wooden floor of our sleeping loft squeaked and swayed. In my barely-awake state I thought, gee, that feels like a tremor, but dismissed it. After all, we were in Rome where seismic activity is not very common. We had felt several tremors in Ascoli Piceno where the mountainous terrain is more conducive to shakings and rattlings. But Rome?
When we woke up again at 7:30 am we heard the horrible notizia of severe damage and tragic deaths in the region of Abruzzo. It has grown progressively worse throughout the day as more bodies are discovered, more destruction detected. Compounding the situation is the damage sustained at the L'Aquila hospital, requiring partial evacuation of current patients and leaving some victims outside to be treated in the courtyard. The images are heartbreaking, and our thoughts and prayers go out to those grieving, hurting families.
From the video and photos I have seen, the newer buildings were just as susceptible as the old stone structures. When the earth moves out from under you there is no differentiation.
Bryan talked to a friend in Ascoli who said the tremor was very strong but there were, thankfully, no problems there. Sant'Emidio is being hailed again for saving the city from destructive earthquakes.
Diane slept while Rome trembled. Too bad we all awoke to a nighmare-ish situation affecting so many. it is so strange to realize that thirty seconds can change the lives and landscape of an entire city.