- slept in a nightgown in my own bed
- woke to an alarm clock and not an earthquake
- used and flushed the toilet
- took a shower
- talked to people on the internet
- knew without checking that my friends and family were safe
- baked with electricity
- received a phone call
- went outside without a dust mask
- walked on asphalt rather than mud
- bought some things I needed from the local supermarket
- caught a bus that goes straight from home to work
- worked at my own desk in my own building with my own phone number
- didn't leave work until my scheduled end of day
- came home to find my house and contents as I'd left them
- got a bill in the mail
- put my emptied rubbish bins back in their spots
- fed my cat
- drank water from the tap
Because we all remember.
When we had none of this. When we had only fear, and the kindness of strangers, and rumours of destruction and death - rumours replaced by news of worse. Waiting for an ambulance that never came, not just because the traffic was impossible, but because a minor motorcycle accident doesn't rate compared to the CTV building and others.
The official number now is 185 dead.
My memories are the most vivid for me; but for me it's the wider context, the "we", that for joy or sorrow makes me cry. I didn't go to the memorial, because to be confronted right now with that "we" remembering -- I just can't. But I made biscuits for my colleagues, and watched out the window of the bus at the roses, sunflowers, lilies and agapanthuses in roadcones along the way. When I got to work my colleagues who hadn't gone were streaming the ceremony, and I just couldn't, but I brought up the #eqnz Twitter stream and watched the dots mark the 2 minutes silence.
I also spent a lot of time today not thinking about tears, because I had emails and customers and websites and books to deal with. Because, despite being aware that large chunks of the city remain broken, of its people in dim and dire straits, and despite all the new habits formed (by so many of us) from the bone-deep knowledge that any moment the world might turn upside down again, my own life is essentially, weirdly, weirdly unweirdly, back to normal.
But not and never the same.
Because I remember; because we remember.