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In which Christchurch makes an artform of the temporary
New Zealand zebra, NZ
zeborahnz
Posting here because Blogger won't let me comment where it should be. Full history:


"They started bringing that joy back mere weeks, maybe days after the quakes."


My sister and I made sandcastles out of the liquefaction the morning after February. We'd barely slept after a night of three quakes a minute (the bloody Port Hills kept reflecting them back on us) and the world had brought us sand, so. It made a few neighbours smile: well worth the time.

One thing I was thinking the other day — walking past the chalkboard on Colombo and (Tuam?) and an empty block which is mostly carpark except for the footprint of one shop taped off, with "No parking" sprayed in pink on the aggregate, and signposted "GapFiller coming soon" — is that Christchurch is making an artform of the temporary. Sandcastles, and yarnbombs, and Easter bunnies made from milk bottles atop road cones. We might have four seasons in a day and we sure don't have a clue what the roadworks are going to do tomorrow morning, but we also never know where a GapFiller might pop up next.

There's a tremendous beauty in that. And a pain underneath it that for me makes the beauty all the sharper. And this beauty is everywhere in Christchurch these days, like and in the wildflowers blooming in the piles of rubble.

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That first article is unbelievable! I started reading it with some sympathy for the writer, given the obvious culture shock involved in moving from New York to Christchurch, but I lost my sympathy as she just got whinier and whinier and was obviously determined not to find anything to like here. And then she caps it off with such an insensitive mention of the earthquakes - I totally agree with Karen's assessment.

I never really thought of myself as "belonging" in Christchurch until the earthquakes - it was just the city where I lived, pleasant but nothing special. But since 2010/11 I've found a deep love for this city and the amazing people who find such a well of creativity among the rubble. I'm proud to be a Cantabrian now.

After living overseas for a couple of years I came back knowing Christchurch was Home; but the earthquakes and the us-ness of our shared experience of them has definitely changed the feeling of that, making it deeper and more visceral.

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