“and the earth moved”

Friday, November 10, 2006

Last night we had a town meeting about an earthquake drill that will take place tomorrow. It was pretty well organized, and only started about 15 minutes late. Meetings of this sort are usually called for no earlier than 9:00pm, after dinner meetings. No one would even think of holding a meeting on an empty stomach. Town has been divided up into four zones, and we have zone captains, they will wear red jerseys, regular folks have been issued blue jerseys. Uniforms are an important part of the Italian psyche. We were all given instructions: don’t stop to put on your make up,  turn off the gas, water and lights, etc. etc. We were also given ‘Safety Bags”, with apologies that the bags were labeled in English. Seems this is some sort of prototype project in the EU earthquake zones, hence the English. Our Safety Bags include a thermal blanket, working flashlight, radio, and first aid kit. We are supposed to fill it in with any necessary medicines or copies of documents.  As we collected our Safety Bags, we were also given tickets for lunch tomorrow, seems that after the drill the whole town will have lunch together. Only in Italy would the discussion about lunch be as seriously debated as an evacuation plan.
There have been two earthquakes in area in the past month, this is a very active part of the world.

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