It was hard to decide whether to go into Christchurch city. It wasn't somewhere I knew well before the earthquakes, nor felt any particular attachment to. There was also this exaggerated Kiwi sense of politeness holding me back - after all, it's rude to stare. But, in the end, we felt it was something we should see, an experience we need a real sense of, beyond the photos and newsreels.
We started off by having coffee at Re:START Mall. It's all bright and cheerful and feels like it should give you hope. But it somehow didn't, partly because it was so empty.
|Full of sunshine and bright colours, but not people.|
|And then you turn around and remember why the mall exists in the first place.|
|Strange juxtaposition of spring; new leaves, punting on the Avon,|
a ruined church.
|So many buildings gone.|
|We've seen many versions of this scene, but the reality is raw and painful.|
Where do they find hope?
More Christchurch photos