We’ve just returned from a trip south, spending a night in Christchurch on the way home. The city was so different from my last visit, a couple of weeks before the February earthquake. We left the car close to the apartment we lived in, in Park Terrace. That building seem to have survived quite well and was inhabited.
Latest news: my friend Terry has just sent me a link to a video taken along the route of the bus tours, with a very good commentary by Warwick Isaacs, Demolition MAnager for CERA (Chch Earthquake Recovery Authority). Long, but well worth watching.
Life certainly hasn’t got back to normal yet after last week’s disastrous earthquake in Christchurch, even here in quiet Nelson. Everyone is still deeply affected.
At the start of our Rotary club meeting two days after the earthquake, we had a reading and a prayer from Charles Tyrell, from the Nelson Cathedral. I’m sure he won’t mind if I reproduce it here:
I spent a few days in Canterbury last week, deliberately staying well clear of the state of emergency in Christchurch following their big earthquake. A hitchhiker from Israel I picked up on the trip down could not believe that the earthquake was the same magnitude as that in Haiti. The very small number of casualties here shows the difference made by good infrastructure. I’m sure the fact that the engineers at Canterbury University are world leaders in earthquake engineering also helped a lot.
I drove from Nelson to Methven and apart from a detour around Coalgate/Glentunnel had a fairly uneventful trip. The church at Hororata showed some damage, but apart from that there was little evidence of the quake. I drove past the church a few days later and was amused to see the effective security in place. The locals had simply run up a deer fence round the church.