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We flew from Sydney to Christchurch, New Zealand yesterday to undertake another one week housesit before we begin our tour of New Zealand.  We are staying in New Brighton, a coastal suburb of Christchurch, about ten kilometres east of the city centre, and known for having the largest pier in Australasia.

Even before we visited the CBD, the effects of the earthquake are plain to see, all around.  Many of the roads are very bumpy with lots of repaired splits in them, and there are vacant lots dotted around everywhere, where buildings have had to be demolished.  Many others are condemned to the same fate – just awaiting their turn.  

Indeed, the house where we are staying has sustained considerable damage and is awaiting major repair or demolition – though you mustn’t worry – the house is quite habitable!

This post is not meant to express doom and gloom.  It’s merely to express the difference from our last visit to Christchurch two years ago – only a matter of days before the earthquake struck on February 22nd, 2011.  The city has plans in place for a total re-build, and work is already underway, though progress is slow.

We were fortunate that the Cathedral Square Walkway was open over the Christmas holiday period, while the contractors took their break, allowing us rare access to see for ourselves the devastation the earthquake caused.

It’s a heartbreaking and sobering sight