April 18th, 2014
How do different countries handle extreme weather?
What is your favorite type of weather?
Today, Mexico experienced a magnitude 7.2 earthquake. It was during breakfast time, as the BBC article oddly mentions several times (breakfast is sacred...?) when the earthquake shook buildings, broke glass, and fell trees. Though Mexico experiences frequent earthquakes, people in the Guerrero, a western Mexican state, were panicked, especially those who were indoors. Many were afraid to return to their houses after the quake, as aftershocks are known to be dramatic as well.
In 1985, Mexico experienced its largest quake in recent history, a magnitude 8.1 shocker that destroyed much of Mexico City and killed at least 10,000 (I am puzzled why this was worded in the article as if we don't know for sure. It has been almost 30 years. We should know). Since then, new buildings in Mexico have had to face more stringent regulations regarding earthquake resistance, but older buildings were not always forced to update and the small homes and shacks of the poor in Mexico do not meet any regulations. In this way, earthquakes are especially dangerous for many Mexicans. Due to this, I am thinking of replacing my current favorite fancy saying-- "I hate you like tornadoes hate trailer parks"-- with something more south-of-the-border themed."Te odio como los terremocos odian las baraccas." Fancy.
However, every place has issues with natural disasters; they only vary in nature and preparedness. As Kansans, we are fully aware of the risk of tornadoes. We have drilled for them since we were Kindergartners, and I think all of us have experienced at least some funnel cloud action. Houses in Kansas are generally built with basements, and my neighbor has a full tornado shelter beneath his house. Aside from one very life-endangering experience at a Red Robin, I have never experienced ill-preparedness in the face of a tornado. But what most mid-westerners don't know is that the Missouri Fault Line is one of North America's largest faults, and though it does not experience action often, when it does, it is dramatic. I, along with just about everyone I know, am not prepared for an earthquake. I would probably react very similar to how I reacted in manhunt. I would panic and lay on the ground.
While Mexico doesn't seem extraordinarily well prepared for earthquakes, if the US ever tried to get uppity about another country's poor planning, the other country could just mention that we allowed the city of New Orleans to be built at all. It is below sea level in a coastal area. It is amazing it did not just sink into the sea. The last city that was built below sea level on a coast was Atlantis, and you see what happened to it. That's right, it's a luxury vacation destination. Just tragic.
Now that I have almost reached my word quota, I'm going to take these last 40 or so words to list my favorite types of weather. Feel free to list your favorite weather in the comments and avoid real thought synthesis of any kind.
1. Summer rain
2. Mostly sunny with cumulus clouds
5. The five-day forecast