I was sitting at my desk here (in Sri Lanka), not far from the Parliament building, around two-ish. There was a strange stillness – enough to make me stop. It felt as though the keyboard was pulsing a little – no movement, just as though the whir of the fan had intensified, and had entered the keyboard so that the rhythm moved up to my fingertips. Stranger (if you knew how heavy I am), the same disembodied sensation was moving up from my toes and buffering the seat of my chair.
I looked for a rational explanation, but could find none. Until a little while later a friend called, to say there’d been a huge earthquake in Indonesia.
Yes, the shock waves could be felt all the way across the Indian Ocean.
Now, that’s the power of nature. The awesome power of nature.
The nation has been on full alert all afternoon – the terror of the Boxing Day Tsunami will take a generation or so to fade.
On the eve of the country’s most important holiday season it is a special gift that we have escaped – at 6.30 pm local time, the Tsunami Alert was lifted.
I think the New Year celebrations will be particularly fervent this year.