[WANDERLUST] Christchurch has come, risen and will come again

After finally coming around to creating our photo book for this trip through iPhoto two years on, it has allowed me to reflect on how this one trip reignited my desire for learning, wonder and wanderlust.

I received a call from my good friend Jon in the early evening one week night in 2012 as I was still busy at work which went something like this:

J: “I booked tickets to Christchurch next week. Take leave. You’re coming with me and we’re leaving on Tuesday.”

N: “Ok…”

J: *hangs up*

** [The above dialogue is a slight dramatisation but is pretty close to what I recall]

Immediately, I submitted my leave request and called my Manager to let him know I was taking the next week off. Unfinished work? That could wait – the feeling you get when you have these opportunities of impulse arise far outweigh any obligations when you’re in the moment. With only our carry-on duffel bags, a down jacket and some gloves – we crossed the Tasman and landed in Christchurch just after midnight due to a short flight delay during take-off. We slowly traipsed over to our hire car and off we went.

With no accommodation booked and arriving after midnight in a city that was still in the midst of rebuilding from one of their worst natural disasters the year before, where were we to go? To the Irish Pub of course. The one place anywhere around the world where you know will be opened and you know you’ll be welcomed. And this kicked off our amazing 5 day adventure…

Meeting some amazing characters who have called Christchurch home their entire life and hearing their stories of rebuilding life with their families and friends…

Watching the sunrise from our accommodation for the night (our hire car) on the Kaikoura Penninsula

Morning sunrise at Kaikoura Penninsula

Morning sunrise at Kaikoura Penninsula

Scaling the Fox Glaciers with our private guides (surprisingly we were the only ones there that day):


Fox Glacier – up, up and up we go!

Facing our fears bungee jumping off a bridge…



Taking a shower in the public showers at the local Hanmer Springs Pools…

Squatting overnight in the games room at a local backpackers hostel we visited…

Attending the local Church for a Sunday service… in the office building next door because the cathedral was completely destroyed by the earthquake:

What's left of the cathedral...

What’s left of the cathedral…

And much, much more..

What we learnt and experienced on this spontaneous trip far outweighed that of any other we had been on before. When life gives you lemons, come together as a community, hold on tight and help each and every person to get back on their feet. Community and friendship become so much more important when things don’t go according to plan or when you have no plan at all in our case. Coming back home made us appreciate our lives that little bit more and forced us to rethink how we could help our community in times of need.

This just might have been that tipping point that pushed me over the edge to follow my passion into education.


Just need to look at some things with a new perspective.



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