I got back 3 weeks ago, after 3wks in Christchurch following the earthquake.
My parents live in the north west of the city, that wasnt badly effected by the quake...there are small signs that something happened in the city here and there....large cracks in roads, a few houses without their chimneys. My parents house is secure and watertight, however is cracked inside and out, and each new big aftershock forms another crack.
the aftershocks....everyday the ground shock...sometimes so gently you had to stop and think was that a shake?, other times so much that you were on your feet heading for the nearest doorway. What alot of people here in the UK dont realise is that CHCH has been shaken every day for the last 6mths. they had a quake in Sept, in the early hours, deeper in the ground and out in the countryside, that did some damage and caused no loss of life. Every day since then, there has been aftershocks. Then Feb 22 hit, lunch time in the city on a summers day, people out and about, the quake centered closer to the city and not very deep, and we all saw what happened. It still brings tears to my eyes when i think about it.
I know that when i get back to CHCH again, it will be a different city to that in which i grew up in....buildings will be gone....alot have been pulled down already because they are unsafe.
i dont really have any pictures to share.....you couldnt get into the center of town, onlookers were asked to stay away from the cordened off area (the 4 aves, for CHCH people), so i didnt venture any further into town than Merivale Mall.
It will take a long time for the city to return to normal.
KIA KAKA CHRISTCHURCH XXX