Christchurch is a humbling experience, even for the ultimate JAFA. Found myself walking around the CBD asking myself was I really in New Zealand? The devastated buildings compete with brightly painted shipping containers and excellent street art, to pull at the heart strings. On one side you look at a wrecked building, or closed street, and then you walk into the container park where CBD retail has started again, and people are getting on with their lives. Get the feeling though that most people in the CBD are tourists.
The Cathedral pre-quake would be the symbol of Cantabrian pride, I would suspect. The first picture above shows the damage sustained in the quake. Shot was handheld through the security gate. The second is from the street, and I couldn’t resist giving it a melancholic feel because that was how I felt when I took the shot. The one below is a neat little viewing area directly in front of the Cathedral.
Couldn’t resist the shot above at the rear of the Container Mall, gotta love orange and the ‘Restart’ message says it all.
We stayed at the Heritage in Cathedral Square. Very cool old world style. Makes you wonder though how it survived almost next door to the badly damaged Cathedral. The shot below highlights Christchurch CBD for me, our Hotel in the centre and camera left a container wall, and in between some cool street art.
A couple of streets away from my hotel was this awesome little street. I think the name above is right. But is quite amazing because most of the surrounding streets are full of demolished or soon to be demolished buildings.
All in all I was pretty happy that I only had a day and a half in Christchurch. Think the people who live there are a hardy bunch, really don’t think I could live with it. Never had any fear that there would be another earthquake while I was there, but all the damage is hard to deal with.
On a positive note I was there for my sons birthday. We both have symbolic birthdays this year, Callum 21yo and me 50yo.
Am going to Port Douglas in Northern Queensland in a couple of weeks for my 50th birthday. Lookout for some very bright beach landscapes on that one. Will be taking a pack of Velvia for sure.