Every time I hear about a natural disaster occurring I think of 2 things:
1. I hope that it is never as bad as it seems
2. If it is a place that I have visited, I thank my lucky stars I was not there when it happened.
I’ve said before that travel always offers some risk element; and while bad things may happen in an occasional instance, one thing that happens more often than not are natural disasters.
Whether it is high-risk weather of the Hurricane, Tornado or Flood kind, or bigger natural events like Earthquakes and Tsunamis…the one risk all of these cause to travelers is that you never know when they will strike.
In an ideal world, this would never happen to any of us. But this will never be the case. In a time where terrorism already lives, and a fear of flying can affect us all; it is the bigger risks of natural disasters, especially Earthquakes which freak me out the most. I would love to see a Tornado at some point in my life…but only if I were far enough away to know it couldn’t harm me.
Earthquakes Are A Real Fear When I Travel To California
In the past 6 years, I have traveled approx. 10 times to California because it is the closest port of call for Australians heading to and from mainland USA…and every single time I am there I worry that an Earthquake will hit – because it can!
Do I let it stop me from going there? Hell NO!
But, it is always in the back of my mind, because I have seen the pictures of previous Earthquakes that have hit this area and would not want to be anywhere near such an event unless I was guaranteed that I would live to tell the tale.
Melbourne, Australia has had its fair share of low-scale Earthquakes; and these experiences have been things I have never forgotten. But the extent of these went so far as the ground moving in what felt like a wave under my feet; or windows vibrating softly, ceiling fans moving slightly side to side and the realization that that was an Earthquake. Thankfully, that has suited me just FINE!
Napa Valley Earthquake August 24th, 2014
This region of California is amazing! With rolling hills, wineries, some of the cutest small towns I have ever seen and so much scenery around, it is hard not to love this place, and I truly do!
In the past year, I have visited Napa Valley, Sonoma and Santa Rosa twice. The first time, was August 2013, and the second was just over 3 months ago in May 2014. I loved being there so much, I took my mum back there after my first visit so she could experience it too.
To hear the news of an Earthquake was not a surprise, but to see the damage makes me sad, knowing that some of the loveliest people I have met were caught up in one of the region’s biggest Earthquakes to hit in the past 25 years. But I know that these people will persevere and rebuild what has been broken in the best way they can.
The Travel Risk Will Always Be There
Luckily, this hasn’t been a major catastrophe…YET. But who knows what can happen in the future? Especially when it is likely that a BIG one is due to hit sooner rather than later.
Regardless, I will always visit these places because I love them. San Francisco is one of my top 3 cities in the world. But I never forget the possibility.
I have a few friends in California, and San Francisco especially, and as much as I would LOVE to live there myself, I just don’t know if I could handle it.
I know this will always happen. That bad things will occur in places I have been, and places I may even be visiting at the time.
But the most important message is this: that no matter what can happen, you continue to travel to places you wish to see. You continue to visit places that natural disasters and bad weather has hit before and will do so again in future.
Because, no matter what: to live, is to experience all that is in this world: the good and the bad. The areas that are targets and those that are not.
Every community needs us. To spend our money; experience a place they call home; and to share our memories with others to inspire them to visit as well.
And, I will continue to do this.
Simply, because it is impossible to stay away from the ones you love.