Fires on the Ground, Confusion in the Soul

Regular readers of my blog or social media feeds will know that I live in Christchurch, New Zealand. I’m proud of the city where I live. It just breaks my heart to see my city threatened once again by Mother Nature.

We have had our fair share of natural disasters, mostly in the form of earthquakes (something that I have written about on numerous occasions), but Christchurch is definitely not immune to the ravages of weather.

Flooding from March 2014 meant that many had be to rescued by boat. (Photo: Joseph Johnson/Fairfax NZ)

There was the flooding back in March 2014 were St Albans (the suburb literally on the other side of the main road from me) was evacuated because the water was waist high. My neighbour had flooding in her garage that was ankle deep. Meanwhile, I was nice and dry on my little low-level island.

We’ve had storms with extremely high winds, taking down trees that have stood for nearly 100 years, if not longer, and almost taking out my neighbour’s car as a branch fell across the road right in front of her. There’s been snow that has forced the city to shut for business for the day (and Christchurch doesn’t get snow).

However, in the 17 years that I have lived in Christchurch, I think this is the first time that my home city has come under threat because of a bush fire.
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Earthquakes and Supermoons

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p style=\"text-align: justify;\">Originally, I had planned an entirely different blog post for this week, something that had nothing to do with science, but sometimes life can change at the drop of a hat.

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p style=\"text-align: justify;\">On November 14, 2016 at 12:02 am (New Zealand Time), an 7.5-magnitude earthquake struck 15 km north-east of Culverden. The coastal town of Kaikoura has been devastated, effectively cut off from any help, but they are not alone. The entire country felt this.

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9/11: A view of life…

On the weekend just past, it was the 15th anniversary of the 9/11 disaster.  Every year, for the past 15 years, I have been silent about my memories of that day, fearful that someone would get offended.

The events of that day had a global impact. So many things changed in an instant. The world was in chaos. No one knew what was going on and planes around the world were being grounded.Read More

Remembering the June 2011 Christchurch Quake

Today marks the fifth anniversary of two strong quakes that shook the city of Christchurch, New Zealand. On June 13, 2011, a 5.7-magnitude quake was followed by a 6.3 quake only a few hours later.

After a long string of quakes and aftershocks that had riddled our existence for nine months, it wasn't surprising that many of us were nonchalant about the events of that day, but as I look back at it now and realize how fortunate I was.

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Freddy the Flax in the Red Zone

Back in January, 2015, I asked for survivors of the Christchurch quakes to share their stories. The response was overwhelming. I was so touched by all the stories. In February, I was unable to share all the stories with my readers. However, now that we are approaching the fifth anniversary of the June 13th, 2011 quake, I felt it was prudent that I share with the world the remainder of those stories.

Below is a short story from Jennifer Wilson. We should give a thought to the ones who couldn't speak for themselves: the flora and fauna.

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