Stressing Out

Hanging out in Plaza El Bosque Lobby

Santiago is feeling odd lately.  Every part I have seen is largely undamaged, and yet things have changed so much.  Probably the most noticeable difference is the number of people out on the street.  Last week the streets where deserted after six or seven, now they are packed.  Some of this is due to the fact that I am in the financial district of town, another part is due to summer vacation ending and everyone has returned to town, but I think the earthquake is responsible for a lot of this too.

From my own perspective, I hate to spend time in my hotel room.  It’s hard to return to the place where the most traumatic event of your life happened and just hang out.  I can hardly let a minute pass without thinking I am feeling another aftershock coming on.  This is all in my head of course, we’ve only had one good aftershock since Sunday morning, but every time someone walks down the hall or a truck passes by in the street I start to freak out.  I’ve been drinking pisco sours and beers before bed with other survivors, but a lot of people have escaped to home now.  So my new distraction is walking around the neighborhood, which is now full of other like minded people.  The parks are full, the restuarants are packed, and people just seem to be everywhere. Well, everywhere except their homes.

Written from the lobby of my hotel…

(OK, sorry this was so bleak.  But that was one seriously freaky event and I think it will be awhile before I feel normal again!)

Plaza El Bosque Lobby. They say its only superficial damage...


4 Responses to “Stressing Out”

  1. Beth Dickinson Says:

    Hello Derek,
    Mucho Gusto, Derek,
    Just finished reading your update regarding your earthquake experience.
    I called your Dad immediately from the Miami airport when I saw the “Breaking
    News” on CNN. Your dad was helping Geoff and family move so he called me later saying that you were safe.
    I work with 2 RN’s from Chile and they had contact with their families who were okay but stunned.
    It has to be very challenging for you living in a hotel and not having the comfort of family and friends. Just know that we are all thinking of you.
    Take care and God bless.
    Buena Suerte, Chao, Honeybeth-Houston

  2. Bob Daniels Says:


    Once again, it is good to hear that you are still moving forward. I understand the nature of your post and while I don’t think I’d behave any differently, I hope that you can continue to see the transitory nature of what you are “feeling” right now.

    I hope things in Chile are improving. I know that they are the subject of many conversations both here at the Observatory & also in the media all over the US. We see news coverage of the “destruction” – they really like to focus on that – and once in awhile we see a story of the strength of the people and joy in some small victory. I’m trying to focus on those when I give time to the problems that hit you in the face everyday. Let me know if there’s anything I can do to help. Even if it is just to Skype for a few minutes I can make the time. Let me know if you still have access to your gmail addy and I will try to contact you that way.

    Take care of yourself….Bob

  3. Tigger and Chuck Norris Says:

    Glad to hear you’re okay after the big quake. Your blog is great. Take care, Chuck and Tigger

  4. Alan Harris Says:

    Hi Derek
    Great to hear you have escaped intact. Although we are thousands of miles away from the scene,rest assured you are not forgotten.
    A constant reminder here in Cornwall UK is the Airbus 300 taking off from Newquay which we can see from our house.
    There is a charity (Shelter Box) based not far from us who pack and send aid in the form of Shelter Boxes.Each large plastic box contains a ten person tent,blankets,water purification & cooking equipment, tools and a stove,plus smaller items. So far 800 of these boxes have been sent to Haiti and now they are going to Chile.
    With all the unrest in this world it is satisfying to see how people respond
    to others when disaster strikes.There is hope for the human race yet
    Keep smiling,We’re all thinking of you
    Best as always,
    Alan (aka Unc A)

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