– Canterbury University, Commerce Building.

There I was on the 22 Feb starting a new paper at Uni. It was a American History course, Selling the American Dream. What was ironic at the time was we were studying an American Steel Merchant who name now escapes me. Just writing down notes, when all of a sudden came a rude hard shove. Thought it was an aftershock from 4 September, but then the whole lecture theatre, at the bottom of the Commerce Building I might add, began shaking like crazy!

Under the lecture desk, a thin strip of wood, my initial reaction was to reassure the girls seated next to me. When it stopped everyone grabbed their things, laptops, water bottle and we bolted outside and up the stairs to get out. The quad was packed with lecturers, staff members and terrified students.

I stood with a course-mate in Forestry Road wondering what the heck had just happened. We got told accounted for and told to walk down Clyde Road to Ilam Road. The sea of people and cars was amazing. We stood under the old trees opposite Ilam Fields when the big aftershock hit, I watched a 4WD bounce and cried.

Spent five hours wandering the fields with another group of students before coming home. I remember trying to get a glass of water and wondering why the tap wouldn’t work, and where my cat Max was. Terrified he fled at 3am on the 23 but came back a week later.

Cannot believe what happened, but oh so grateful to everyone who looked after me. You’ll never be forgotten. Thank You.

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