Published: August 30, 2008 at 9:43 PM
Personally, yes. Theme park-wise, no.
I was still living in the Bay Area during the years 1986-1993. As a result, I got treated to the Loma Prieta quake of 1989, and the Oakland Hills firestorm of 1991.
I was just leaving work (in Emeryville) when the quake hit. I was sitting in my car, letting the engine warm a bit, when the entire car started bouncing up and down slightly. My first thought was "OK, who's jumping on my bumper?" When I looked up and found no one there, I realized it was a quake.
I didn't think much of it at first. However, just as my brain shifted into 'disregard, nothing big' mode, the main wavefront hit. The car bounced so violently that it was all I could do to just hold on to the wheel for dear life and pray that I wouldn't get overturned or something equally nasty. About that time, a bunch of windows on the factory building across the street blew out.
It was over nearly as fast as it had hit. I went back in, picked up a few bits and pieces that had fallen, and headed out to (of all things) do my laundry. The TV at the laundromat was on the local news channel, and that's when I learned just how severe the shaker had been (Bay Bridge and Cypress Freeway structures collapsed).
The image of cars trying (and failing) to stop on the Bay Bridge before going over that edge is, unfortunately, burned into my (very) permanent memory. I still get the heebie-jeebies about it to this day.
As for the Oakland Hills fire, we came very close to losing our house. I left late, after the rest of my family had already gone, and I clearly remember driving out past an entire hillside that once had a bunch of nice houses on it, but was now nothing but embers (I could literally feel the heat through the car door as I went past).
Thanks to the efforts of a very small and very brave group of volunteer firefighters, our area was one of the few that was spared. We didn't get so much as smoke damage. The rest of the area, however, was not so fortunate. It took two years before the place even started to look normal again.
Perhaps the most valuable lessons I took away from these incidents were to count your blessings, and NEVER take anything truly important to you for granted!