– Lyttelton, Canterbury, New Zealand

Tuesday 22nd, 12:45 i was off for special choir auditions for the Christchurch Music Festival in our school hall – Lyttelton Main School, I was year 8 full of high expectations and leadership. Leaving our lunch spot I left my friends and made my way to our school hall. About 5 minutes after everyone arrived we were doing warm up scales

12:51 Screaming children surround me I am a boat in the middle of the Pacific Ocean in a thunder storm, no one can stop, start or change anything Mother Nature is doing as she pleases, we dive for shelter the 3 people including our teacher – Mrs Vicki Lewis go for the doorway, the rest of us, about 6 somehow get under the school piano.

We leave the building quickly, people still on the ground in the “turtle position” luckily far away from the Lyttelton Goal wall. When we get all the students out of the buildings and all together we move to the bottom part of the school to be safe and to comfort each other, after we had been given a breif of what was going to happen, we make a move of getting everyone to the safety of the Lyttelton Recreation Centre, well on that perticular devistating day, the Civil Defence Ward.

All of a sudden I see my Grandfather coming along the road in his bright yellow truck, on a normal day this would be humiliation for me, but for once I didnt give a damn.

I open the front door to our house, it was devistation at school but I soon realised that was nothing to what I was about to see. I walk into the lounge my Grandmothers china cabinet (a life-times worth of collections) is on the floor and everything is on the floor, our plates, my fish tank absolutely everything is gone, I am crying my eyes out, trying to see through my tears I force myself to venture around the rest of the house. My room a shambles the bathroom is a mess. About 60% of the windows around our house are smashed. I was living in our caravan for about 5 and a half months with my grandparents and our dog, cat and for a little bit a cockatoo as well. 2 days later it is red stickered. I somehow also managed to practice my alto saxophone through all of our personal devistation. As I sit here at this current time I have been sitting at my desk in our new but damaged rental property only about a couple of blocks up from our severly damaged home. I am 12 years old, in my Cashmere High School loving it and making friends and looking forward to my future, Earthquakes or not, Lyttelton and the whole of Christchurch. We will be back, we have to remember we have lost our history, but the way we lost our history will be part of our futures history.

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