Thank you New Zealand, thank you!
This goes out to everyone that has helped us here in Christchurch so far, even those who live here. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
Let’s look at it, Christchurch is munted, in the east there are at least 10,000 houses needing rebuilding and 128 buildings in the Red Zone have had their lifelines cut short. On top of that, the locals are pretty much stressed out after 6 months of unannounced shakes.
Can we do the recovery by ourselves? Probably not. The announcement of the formation of CERA (Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority) was greeted with trepidation by some because it may lessen the control we have over our own future. But wait a moment, let’s think about it, can we do this by ourselves? The simple answer is, no probably not, there is simply too much to do.
In this way, we have to be aware of just how much the rest of the country is contributing to Christchurch’s recovery. And we need to be thankful to the rest of the country, because they are doing it hard too.
At the motel we have noticed 2 patterns of stay, the long term guest of 3 to 4 weeks and the Monday - Thursday guest. The long term guests are here for the duration and often work everyday. Monday – Thursday guests come into Christchurch for the recovery on Monday, stay 4 nights and then head home on Friday. The easy thing to say is, “Hey! Stay for the other 3 days!” and help us put Christchurch together even faster. But if you think about it, these people all have families too and at the moment they are giving over half of their lives to us. Four nights here in Christchurch means only 3 nights back home, and that must be tough. They are all working long hours here and then spend their down time in a motel a long way from home. They need to go home and see their families, participate in their communities and relax on their lazy boys. The other thing is that they still need to work in their own communities. For every day they spend here, is a day less they spend in their own communities, working and playing and for this reason we must be very grateful to them for the efforts and the sacrifices they are making for us.
For some of our guests this has gone on for 5 weeks now and will probably continue for a number of weeks to come. In addition, long term guests are here for up to 3-4 weeks at a time before returning to their hometowns.
In this way it is easy to see that this Christchurch disaster will have a large effect on all of the country for many years to come.
Hence we are ever so grateful to those that are working here, by themselves, for us, away from their own homes, away from their loved ones, away from their comfort zones, for us. This will go on for a long time to come and we are and will be for a long time yet, very, very grateful for their sacrifices for us.