28 November, 2016

#Microblog Mondays: Coming home

We got home safely, taking a necessary detour up through the centre of the South Island, rather than along the beautiful coast road that has been destroyed in the earthquake, where the seabed has been lifted by two metres, and where lives and livelihoods have been destroyed. I felt guilty that I enjoyed the drive so much, over a mountain pass that I have only travelled once (I think) before and I had forgotten how beautiful it was, through lush green farmland, rocky hills, and dense native forest, with some obvious earthquake damage to roads and bridges on the way, though thankfully still navigable.

Getting home too was no problem, finding only that a few magazines had slid off a wonky pile, a book fell off my desk, and a pot had wobbled over. I am very thankful, as I didn't know how our house on stilts would fare in such a prolonged shake, and I know how lucky we have been so far, living only a few kilometres away from the city where buildings are being demolished as a result of earthquake damage.

Finally, a note to say that travelling in New Zealand in November was blissful for the No Kidding amongst us, as we encountered very few families with children (school isn't out yet, either for Kiwis or our tourists until December). We were able to relax and enjoy our trip, without reminders of our own situation or that of others, and without worrying about what others might be thinking of us.

The only time I was reminded that I didn't have children was an hour or so out of Wellington, on the deck of the ferry going through the Marlborough Sounds, when we got chatting to an American man who explained that he and his wife bring all their nieces and nephews to New Zealand as a college graduation present. They have visited here about five times (and the day before the election said that they were seriously considering moving here), and yes, you guessed it, they do this for their nieces and nephews because they don't have any children.


  1. You will have to tell me the name of the mountain pass... I would love to drive across it one day too!

    What a cool thing, having an uncle and an aunt that give such an awesome graduation present!
    (I have 7 uncles and aunts; all of them had always been busy raising their own children, so I rally was never important in any way for them).

    1. Klara, if you come to NZ, I intend designing you the most awesome driving route through the best of New Zealand!

  2. Glad you are home and the damage is minimal. It has bedn heartbreaking to see all the destruction. May rebuilding lead to healing.

    And that couple. What amazing people they are to gift the experience of such a beautiful place to their nieces and nephews. It does take a village and they are doing something that will forever impact.

  3. I am so glad that your house fared well! I was nervous for you. The mountain pass sounds amazing, such a contrast to the destruction along the coast...the pictures I've seen are unbelievable. What a wonderful gift for nieces and nephews! That is something truly special.

  4. Glad you made it home safely and that all was well when you got home!! Growing up on the Canadian Prairies, earthquakes were not something we ever had to worry about. (Tornados, floods and blizzards, yes, earthquakes no.) We've had a few minor ones in the 30+ years I've lived in southern Ontario (in the 3-5 range), many of which I didn't even notice. The ones I did notice, though, were definitely weird experiences.

  5. Catching up on my blogs... so glad you and your husband were just fine and that the house was fine. We always get nervous about those earthquakes for all the New Zealanders we know - esp. after we saw the devastation in Christchurch.