Walking around the CBD at Christchurch in 2018, I was of course struck by the level of devastation that the earthquake had caused. But in saying that, I was also struck by the things that have survived.
Looking at these photos, it was reassuring that the old-time pioneers built such hardy buildings.
And even when the buildings were damaged, the fact that they survived in some form (as in the case of the Anglican Cathedral) is astonishing.
After following the alpine rivers to the coast, it was a case of retracing our steps back to the city of Christchurch. We’ll concentrate a bit on Christchurch here. Few people can visit this city in 2018 and emerge unmoved.
On Tuesday, 22nd of February, 2011, the city was hit by a 6.2 earthquake whose centre was a mere 7km from the CBD. This was after 7.1 earthquake hit the area some 5 months before. What resulted was utter devastation, and though we visited almost 8 years after the earthquake, what happened in 2011 was still all around in the vacant lots that were waiting to be rebuilt.
But I don’t want to dwell solely on the tragedies, because I think it’s the creative and vibrant ways that the locals found to get back on their feet – things that can be found around almost every corner – that really made our visit. I’ll write about some of these little things in this series.