How was it for you darling? Almost twenty four hours ago, at around 12.55 on Tuesday February 26th, something moved fifteen miles beneath the planet's surface under Market Rasen in Lincolnshire, producing Britain's most significant seismic event in twenty five years.
It had been breezy when I walked home from the pub quiz. I was lying in bed, beginning to drift off into the unconsciousness of sleep when I had a sense that a massive wind had hit the house - perhaps blowing the front door open. An ornament fell off the bedroom shelves and I was shaken wide awake. What the hell? Shirley woke up and yelled at me "Are you all right?" She thought I had had some kind of massive seizure that had shaken the bed. Disappointing her ever so slightly, I leapt up and put on my dressing gown, went downstairs and saw the thing I will always remember as a signal memory of this perhaps one-in-a-lifetime event. The Danish royal family keyring on our front door key was still rocking in the lock instead of hanging completely still as usual.
Frances was home for the night from university and she was still up watching TV. She said the whole front room had shaken. When I think back, it felt like you were briefly living in a jelly house, subject to the whimsical power of a huge and ancient natural force - reminding me of the pettiness of our daily anxieties and complaints. It measured 5.2 on the Richter Scale and I can say that never before in my life have I experienced such a tremor.