Mother earth let humankind us know who's boss in the last week or two. The death toll from the cyclone which ravaged Burma, aided by its criminal and inept military government, is approaching 78,000 by the latest count. As if a cyclone wasn't enough, the most severe earthquake in 58 years hit China approximately a week later.
I can relate to the unnatural feeling of the ground moving. I still remember my first earthquake, my bed walked itself across the floor and things fell down. Since then I've experienced a few others, none were of the magnitude of the earthquake in the Sichuan region of China this week. A Richter scale magnitude 7.9 earthquake is severe. For example, the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake (San Francisco World Series earthquake) had a magnitude of 6.9, as did the Sylmar earthquake of 1971. By comparison, last weeks earthquake in China was 20 times as strong. The death toll from the China earthquake is approaching 30,000 with the Chinese still working frantically to find buried survivors.
All of this makes the recent art auctions seem trivial and as I was Googling the news this morning over coffee, I came across a Chinese site with some remarkable pictures from the earthquake region in China. I do not read Chinese, so although I have included the captions, I have no idea what they say. Each caption is linked to the source page on the Shifang.gov.cn website.
These are touching photographs, presented without further comment.