I felt earthquake tremors this afternoon.  I was sitting on the front porch, in a low-back plastic chair, reading a book on photography.  It felt like something was trying to move my chair.  I got up out of the chair, picked it up and checked the legs (thinking the chair was going to break on me).  The legs were solid as always.  I put down the chair and sat on it again.  I still felt the moving-the-chair sensation.  I got up and went inside.  I opened Facebook.   The first entry I saw was my cousin Toby’s status “Earthquake!”.  The epicenter of the earthquake was in Mineral, VA, only 10 miles east of where my cousins Ann and Vince (Toby’s parents) live.  Everyone is okay; they suffered no property damage.  The earthquake measured 5.8 and was very unusual for the East Coast.  There have been scattered reports of damage to homes and commercial buildings, including falling masonry at Washington’s National Cathedral.  The Washington Monument will be closed indefinitely after engineers found cracks near the top.  The earthquake also prompted precautionary shutdowns of 10 nuclear power plants in Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania and New Jersey and the evacuation of the Pentagon and the U.S. Capitol.

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