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17 Days Until Race Day

So, it has been a little while since my last update. This is due to the fact that I was ill for a few days and then on Saturday afternoon we had two rather big earthquakes that measured 5.8 an 5.2 on the Richter scale. These were followed by another five smaller quakes measuring between 4.0 and 4.8 and some 340 aftershocks.

I was at home alone with the baby when the first one hit and I remember grabbing her and running, then stopping to see the hallway snaking like a concertina in front of me as ornaments fell off the shelves and pictures off the wall. Due to the frequency and size of the aftershocks, we decided it was safer to grab the cats and a few belongings and head out to my brother-in-laws house in the country, away from swaying high-rises and petrified people spending the night in the streets.

Luckily no one died but some 107 were injured, over 1000 buildings damaged, many injured pets, and a lot of people suffering with panic and mild post traumatic stress. Our house was ok apart from broken ceramics and ornaments, a few smashed picture frames and the demise of my carefully curated wine and raki collection (sob). That and the fact that my nerves are still a bit shot to pieces is thankfully the worst of the damage.

The quakes were followed by a horrendous thunderstorm and torrential rain that left swathes of the city flooded, roads blocked by debris, and many people (ourselves included) without electric or water. Thankfully it all seems to have died down now but I have heard rumours of plagues of locusts and rivers of blood forecast for the weekend. Gulp.

Rest assured, I will be returning to my training as of tomorrow morning, come rain or shine and I am most definitely not letting this setback interfere with my plans for the upcoming race.

As you may know, dear Caroline Muscat has been honoured with an award that had many other Maltese journalists spitting feathers. The world’s leading media freedom organisation recognised her work in the field of journalism and gave her an award for Independence at a swanky event in Berlin. Of course, within hours, both Caroline and myself were targeted by trolls online who made libellous comments and threw about ad hominem attacks. This is part and parcel of everyday life for female journalists, so much so that we rarely bat an eyelid when it happens.

The point is that The Shift News was, is, and always will be and for us to keep going despite the trolls, ridiculous lawsuits filed by angry little men, cyberattacks, and other kinds of threats, we need the financial capability to do so. Every cent counts, you can donate here.

 

 

Petra Caruana Dingli at The Shift News

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