New Zealand 21 – Labor Day Weekend vs. Spring. I’ll take Spring.

You know you’ve been assessing earthquake damage for to long when you find yourself on an inclined treadmill at the gym and think to yourself “hm, this feels like a pretty severe 1:25 slope…” My colleague and I were in a school gymnasium today discussing the office floor slopes with the athletic director. He mentioned to us “you guys must be able to tell floor slopes just by walking over them now,” this is oddly true…

Anyways, a lot of varying weather has hit Christchurch lately. Spring has sprung and my seasonal attitude has adjusted accordingly. I ran around the park this past weekend and burst into a huge smile when I realized the park was lined with blooming cherry blossoms. Looks like DC isn’t the only place that likes to showcase their pink trees! Yesterday was, in fact, the second year anniversary of the first of many major recent earthquakes to hit Christchurch–Darfield Earthquake occurred on September 4, 2010 at 4:35am with a 7.1 magnitude. The weather decided to emphasize this by producing one of the largest thunderstorms I’ve ever had the pleasure of sitting through. (Note that I’ve been here since April and have NEVER heard thunder or seen lightning in New Zealand until yesterday.) Some golf-ball-sized hail started crashing on the office windows just as most of us were wrapping up our daily tasks. I watched with trepidation as my rental car got pummeled over and over again with ice chunks…

Poor Ford Focus

The previous weekend I remained in Christchurch again. I took advantage of this by getting some shopping in, checking out all the other farmers markets I’ve been missing out on, and checking out the local beach for the first time–

Sumner Beach #1 (and yes, those are more snow-capped mountains in the background)

Sumner Beach #2

After Sumner beach I managed to navigate the Ford Focus up and over a dodgy hillside to Taylor’s Mistake. No one has yet to correctly explain to me exactly who Taylor is and what exactly his mistake was. However, whoever he is, and whatever he did, this place still makes for beautiful scenery and a great surfing location.

Taylor’s Mistake

This Friday I am off to Sydney, Australia. Therefore, expect a lot more photos OUTSIDE of Christchurch for next weeks post. Cheers!

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