– Prossers Road, Saint Martins, Canterbury, New Zealand

I sleep nicky-noody and was awake when the September 4th quake hit.

I had woken to go to the toilet around 4am and was in bed tossing and turning, huffing and puffing because I was finding it hard to get back to sleep and I wanted to snatch at least another couple of hours sleep.

Then it hit. I leapt naked from my bed and stood in a simian crouch between my bed and my ranchslider all the while hearing colossal crashing as things were falling over in my house and what sounded like a cross between a freight train going past my house and the roar of a 40,000 crowd at a test match when the All Blacks score a try in the dying minutes of the game to secure a win.

Then there was a profound silence.

I have a torch beside my bed and I groped around for it, found it and turned it on.

I picked up my clothes that I had strewn on the floor the night before and got dressed. My neighbour rang my cellphone. We spoke and I said I’d come over. I picked up my small bedside radio and turned it on and held it as I picked my way through the mess on the floor and went next door. I kept thinking “this is national radio, there MUST be some mention of the quake”

However it was only about 5min. post quake at this stage but within minutes the announcer, in a very relaxed manner, said something like “we’ve just had reports of a quake in Christchurch. I’ll check the drums and see what the magnitude was”

And as we know the rest is history.

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