About 10 minutes ago, we experienced a sizeable quake here in Kathmandu. Our house swayed and we made our way fairly quickly down the stairs and out into the yard. Gabe did stop at the door to ask if he should bring a cricket bat. (He thought that the reason we were hustling him out of the house was because of robbers trying to get in.) But other than that we were quickly out in the yard.
I know the advice is generally to squat, hold and cover, but building standards being what they are in Kathmandu we’ve made the decision as a family that we will try to get out from wherever we are if we’re close enough to an exit.
The power went down for a few minutes and in the dark we could feel the earth rolling beneath our feet. Trees in the garden swayed.
I haven’t heard of any damage yet, nor heard what size quake it was. Though our landlord said it is the biggest quake he has felt in Kathmandu for 22 years.
It is a very unsettling feeling to be reminded that the solid earth on which we stand is moving. And sometimes with an abrupt violence.
Update: It seems that we were feeling this quake: a 6.8 Richter scale tremor centred on Sikkim in N-E India.
Update: Three people have been reported dead in Kathmandu after a wall collapsed on them, with two other deaths reported in another district. The article also reports 6 deaths in Sikkim.
Update: The latest reports say that 36 people have died (most of them in India, but a few also in Nepal and Tibet) as a result of the earthquake. The toll could go higher as debris is cleared.