Around the edges of Christchurch Earthquake

We are now in the South Island of New Zealand.

A man asked me and the kids if we are “refugees from Christchurch”.

We said, “no”.

“You look like you could be”.

Makes you think, doesn’t it. Normal everyday people. People like us. People that look like us. Running away from homes that aren’t safe anymore.

Andrew is supposed to speak in Christchurch. “We are fine,” says Noah down in Christchurch, “We have lots of floorspace. Just no electricity, no water and no sewer. We have no phone til the electricity goes back on.” Now think about this for a moment.

Part of me thinks. Lets go in and do something. Anything. I tell you we have been so close to so many “natural disasters” the last couple of years. We ask, we offer and nothing. Should we just be jumping in. Should we have jumped in during the floods in Portugal or the floods in Iran and Pakistan or now in Christchurch. Throwing all caution to the wind and say, “here we are!”

So here we are on the edges of another natural disaster. We are strangely safe. I thought that traveling full time would make us feel more at risk but it has had just the opposite effect. We feel less at risk. Maybe partly because we have less stuff to be at risk. We have a small shovel instead of a sewer. We have an 8 litre water bag instead of water pipes. We have unbreakable dishes. We don’t have a mortgage. But being safe doesn’t change the fact that others are at risk.


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  • admin on March 1, 2011

    I think you could be right Joanna. So many needs in so many places. In the earthquake of 2010 the authorities were taken off guard. This time all are impressed at the coordinated efforts of all to get things back to normal. Some are leaving the city for good. The everyday man and woman are said to have come through with superhuman strength and generosity. There is a team of uni students in the thousands helping clean up. The government is doing an impressive job. All quite impressive.

  • rachel on February 26, 2011

    miss you guys! love hearing about your travels. i cant wait till our paths cross again…

  • Joanna on February 26, 2011

    I think the problem is that sometimes areas get overwhelmed with offers of help and they need coordinated help at a time of intense tragedy. What I wonder though is if Portugal or more especially Pakistan needs the help now, now it is no longer in the news and yet things have not returned to normal.