Sunday, February 28, 2010


After yesterday's post, my family and I stayed in the apartment. I was running on three hours of sleep so I napped in between catching up with family and friends through Facebook, Skype, and Gmail. This is actually what the US Embassy emailed me to do, as social networking sites were the best way to communicate with telephone lines either down or busy, plus it was comforting to get in touch with people, especially my parents and my brother. The US Embassy email also said that some Americans were hurt in the quake, which was difficult to read about. I couldn't help but cringe as I saw so many stranded tourists with only their backpacks on the television news, thinking, I wanted to go on backpacking adventures here! That could have been me without a place to go or a way to leave the country.

Last night, my family and I packed bags of stuff we would need just in case we had to leave in a hurry. SO glad I have my Northface backpack with me and some limited camping gear. It kind of reminded me of last summer, having to pack what I thought I'd need to survive for a night or two without shelter. Luckily though, our neighbors do have two vehicles that we orignally were going to go sleep in last night, but we ended up sleeping in the living room instead, which is the closest room to the door. Nothing like sleeping with your clothes and sneakers on just in case you had to run!

Woke up this morning to another long aftershock. We ran out the apartment, but then it ended immediately, so we came back and looked to the television for information, only the 24 hour news has turned essentially turned into a disturbing video montage of destruction and devastation, complete with intense music and sound bytes of Bachelet's speech last night. I actually got to see Obama address the issue as well, but he was understandably a little more concerned about the ensuing tsunami for Hawaii and the West Coast, although I do believe he offerred support to Bachelet and the Chilean people.

As for today, we're going to venture outside of the apartment for the first time since the quake to see if we can find a grocery store that is open. Last night we were brainstorming good food to buy that would last a long time, because we don't really know how many opportunities we'll have to get food in the coming week. As for water, I have a sterilization kit my brother lent me, which I will be using on all the tap water I drink for the next few days.

As for my apartment, one of friends is a civil engineering student and he did some research for me. According to the US State Department, Chile has developed strong building codes given their history of earthquakes, so a 20 story building like mine should be designed for an earthquake like the one that happened. Just from looking out my window, I can tell that the buildings in my neighborhood are newer and sufferred little damage compared to the shocking images displayed in the media. Within the city, most of the destruction took place in the older areas of town and the airport. Santiago has sufferred 30 deaths. Estimates predict over 300 deaths throughout the country, although only 215 are confirmed by today's issue of El Mercurio. This I know for certain - most of the destruction occurred south of here, closer to the epicenter.

Thank you for reading, maybe consider becoming a follower. I appreciate your concern - I will keep the updates coming.



  1. Thanks for the updates Flo. What type of local info are you getting from TV? Mike Mc.

  2. Flo,

    I spoke with your mom and she said you're OK. We're all thinking about and praying for all you. What a way to start your time in Chile! I'm sure you never feel prepared for an experience like this but you have always been a smart, resourceful, and strong individual. It's difficult times like this when you need to draw on your strong character to see you through. I will keep you all in my thoughts and prayers. Hang in there and stay strong.
    Barbara Hallowell

  3. Hi Flo,

    I'm a friend of your Mom's. What an experience you are having! I'm sure that this new experience is nothing that you envisioned when you wrote your first post! Will be keeping you and the rest of your host family and country in my thoughts and prayers.

    Brenda Dean

  4. Hi Flo,
    Hope you are still coping with aftermath of the earthquake. We are all thinking about you and send our love. Denise and Cambbell Miller

  5. Hi Flo,

    We are praying for your safe return home. What an adventure that you will have to share when you get home!!