Earthquake in Gangtok

In the evening the shoppers went up and down in the square, their cellphones into their ears.A year ago, on this very day, the earth had shivered intensely in the hills bringing down several habitations .We see some women going around with lighted lamps in memory of the 90-odd people who had lost their lives in the tragedy.Just now we are squatted on a bench in the market place,in between shopping for fake branded shoes.

Did you hear a growl and a light shudder beneath your bench? Yes.Exactly at the same time of the day, another one of 4.1 Richter scale played out right before our eyes.The quake is being re-enacted for our edification. A gruesome repetition by nature, a prank played on us who had come here as tourists to enjoy the beauty of this hill city. The lights went out and the phones.We clambered our way back to our hotel in trepidation in the pitch dark of a fearfully expectant night, with the looming possibility of an after-shock of a much higher magnitude. We spent our night with sleep eluding us ,fearful of the hotel walls closing in on us.

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