Saturday, September 04, 2010

The Shaky Isles

We are quite used to small earthquakes in New Zealand, but nothing as big as the one that woke me this morning - as big as the one in Haiti, apparently. After the rumbling and shaking stopped, my husband went around the outside of the house with a torch, reported no apparent damage, and since the power was out, we went back to bed - by far the warmest place.

It wasn't until the power came back on about 10 a.m. that I was able to switch on the TV and see what the damage was like. Around my neighbourhood, there is nothing much to see at all. But the soil structure in Christchurch is very variable, and apparently parts of the city have severe damage, while others are relatively untouched.

You won't see any really dramatic photos here. If that's what you want, head on over to Stuff. I spent most of the day being a good citizen and staying at home as requested. But I did go for a bit of a walk around the neighbourhood, where all seemed pretty much normal...

it was a beautiful spring day...

except that I'm sure this crack across our street wasn't there yesterday.

And a small cluster of three or four houses all had chimney damage.

I've never seen the river quite this colour before, even after heavy rain. It's not usually so full, either. We have been asked to keep away from the water because of sewage contamination.

But the whitebaiters either didn't know or didn't care (whitebait are the young of several species of native fish, considered a delicacy).

The hospitals are not too busy, some minor injuries and two more severely injured patients. But they are braced for potential gastroenteritis in the next few days. I suspect the whitebaiters will be among the first patients.

(Lots of aftershocks. We had about three or four small ones while I was writing this post).


Joan said...

Good to hear you're OK. Must be a very strange time.

Pip said...

Happy to read your post and to hear that you've been relatively unaffected. Apparently my aunt and her family are ok, but I'm still worried about the families of some of my staff who are from Christchurch. My husband's company has its base in Christchurch so I guess we'll be waiting to hear how they got on as well. I must say it was very eerie cycling along the Southern coast this afternoon looking across to the Kaikouras (with a big dump of fresh snow on them), and thinking about how you guys really aren't all that far away!

January said...

I am so glad you're OK. I was worried. Thanks for the photos.

leonie said...

I too am glad you are okay! Thanks for sharing all the photos - just catching up on all your news now.

Good luck with all that paperwork.