Monday, May 02, 2011

Autumn leaves when she arrives!

It's been difficult trying to find the time and enthusiasm for blogging lately, not that I haven't thought about everyone and have even called in to a few places to see whats been happening. I haven't always left a calling card but rest assured I have wiped my silty feet on your mats, read your mail and raided your biscuit tins!


We finally got access to our work building last week following the destructive earthquake on 22 February. I have to say it was weird going back into the place after leaving it in such a hurry in fear and panic on the day. To get back to the building we had to register at a check point, don hard hats and hi-vis vests and ensure we had suitable footwear. That done, we were rounded up into a tent and given a safety briefing before being loaded onto a bus and driven to a point near our building. All very military.


Once at the building, we were given another briefing (what to do if another aftershock hit and stuff like that) before being given just one hour to get what we needed, carry it up/down the stairs to waiting wheelie bins and we were off! Luckily, our office is on the second floor, those poor sods on the fifth floor were looking knackered very quickly. Most of my stuff was in a sodden stinky pile on the floor, ceiling tiles hanging loose and mould everywhere. I left most of it there, no point carting that sort of stuff away unless it was to the tip and there will be time enough for that later.


Thankfully Mother Nature was kind and we had narry a cough from the old bat, exactly one hour later a whistle went and we were ordered out and back to the bus etc. 


So, we then got to cart everything to the temporary offices we are trying to work from this week and from now on. It is a far cry from the inner city carpeted premises near shops that we were used to but none of that really feels important yet. I suppose it will one day but for now it's all I can do to get my feet working as  a team! On the home front, the house is looking better and despite losing all three of our fireplaces we now have a log burner installed for winter. We could have done without the 5.2 shake on Saturday morning, but the Propeller Heads reckon the Faults have all but done venting and we can look forward to quieter times....I guess we will just have to wait and see and make sure things are nailed down anyway!

My two kids have to bus across the city to another high school where they are sharing a campus. It's not ideal. They don't start lessons until 1pm and the last lesson is at 5.35pm, they then board a bus and bus home again not getting home til around 6.30pm. The lessons are shorter (45 mins each) with a 20 minute break at 4pm for a snack. Rather them than me! This will probably be their lot for the rest of the year at least, their own high school is 'munted'. Still, what doesn't kill you makes you stronger so on we go.

All over the city there are empty lots and piles of rubble, we struggle to recall what the buildings used to be. But Autumn has arrived with her rustic charm and I for one am thankful for many things.









12 comments:

Steve said...

This is the story the international news teams never paint - what happens long after the quake, what happenes long after the initial stages of the clean-up. The living with it long term. The patching together of what is normal with what is not. Sounds like it's going to be a long haul but you're already a long way up the road. Keep going. Your fortitude is admirable.

Marginalia said...

Now when anyone says to me they've moved jobs I'll have a completely different take on it.

The Sagittarian said...

Steve, thanks for that! We have a new 'normal' to get used to.

Marginalia, haha speaking of 'jobs' did I mention that I still have to empty the chemical loo every two days (now THATS moving jobs!) :-)

Old Cheeser said...

I totally agree with Steve, Amanda - it's amazing that you are keeping going in the midst of all the destruction caused and a testimony to you and yours' real strength! Well, I suppose you don't have much choice, although I was going to say, have you ever thought of emigrating to avoid this kind of thing wreaking havoc in your lives again? (That's meant seriously, not in bad taste!) However I guess your home turf means too much to you, am I right?

Love your visiting people's blogs analogy in the first paragraph (I would say that, I'm a bloody English teacher).

The Sagittarian said...

Oh my dear Simon, so cool of you to drop in I have missed you! As for leaving here, well when it's raining and cold and the handle on the chemical loo is cold and slippery I have to confess that I do give thought to being 'anywhere but here' but logic tells me that we're all on the same planet and can run but can't hide. I figure these Faults can't keep going forever and we will tough it out, I do love it here you're right! (And thanks for your comments about my first para, much appreciated). :-)

ρομπερτ said...

How very impressive an entry of yours. Wishing you all good thoughts, strength and patience.

Once it was said, that 'one who has a WHY to live, bears nearly every HOW.

Thank you for your all effort.

Stickup Artist said...

I was just making a new post when I saw your comment and I'm so happy to see you are blogging. Sounds like there are a lot of adjustments to make for you, your family, co-workers, and community. It's true what Steve up there said. Long after the news teams move out, the story moves on and on. Good on you keeping a stiff upper lip and I hope you'll be serving up those stiff tipples soon enough. Sending all my best.

Keith said...

Your fortitude ( as you and as a city ) is brilliant, and should be admired and acknowledged. Stuff like this is important. You are in significant times, record every little thing.

...louciao... said...

Getting normalized to the New Normal. Thank you for taking the time to let us all know how things really are, what it is like to pick up the pieces and keep on keeping on. I really appreciate this insight, and knowing that you are coping well. Glad, too, to hear you left your FM pumps at home this time when you went to pick up your office stuff. Live and learn, eh?

Rol said...

Thanks for the update, Sag. Best of luck for the future!

Selina Kingston said...

Your writing helps us see your life beyond the headlines. It's amazing what upheaval you are living with. My thoughts are still with you. Especially with winter round the corner ... xx

The Poet Laura-eate said...

Poor you! No wonder you are feeling so disorientated. Though that's an impressively long missive for someone evidently up to their eyeballs in house and office re-organising!