My Beautiful Hometown

I have been so lucky to grow up in arguably one of the most beautiful cities in the world.

Known as the Garden City, Christchurch New Zealand has the  majestic combination of rugged mountains meeting the white caps of the ocean, with the beautiful Avon river meandering through its heart. Parks, centuries old trees, gardens, stately old homes and gothic styled buildings, more than 100 years old make this city visually spectacular.

At the heart of the city the Anglican cathedral proudly overlooks Cathedral Square, and the entire city flows out in all directions from this point.

Christchurch itself is a celebration of the great outdoors.

Not just a place, it is a lifestyle. Cosmopolitan and international, a beautiful place to visit, a wonderful place to live.

On Tuesday February 22nd 2011 (local time) my beautiful hometown was struck by a 6.3 magnitude earthquake. Centered approximately 3 miles from the heart of town, and at an incredibly shallow depth of only 2.5 miles, it has been devastating. Structures that have withstood many earthquakes over the years didn’t stand a chance.

Christchurch Cathedral, moments after the earthquake

aerial view of the Cathedral
The once grand catholic Cathedral on Barbados Street

As I am writing this the reports are 75 dead, with hundreds still missing.
I hope the media outlets have it wrong. I hope and pray that the search and rescue teams keep pulling live bodies from the carnage.

The CTV building.

The Pine Gould building

At some point in time the earth will stop trembling and the city will rebuild, the way cities do. It may not look the same, but it will still be a beautiful city, and it will rise back up.
But families will never get their loved ones back.
I can’t sit here and write anything funny today. I can’t talk about fashion or skin care or makeup.
My heart is with the people of Christchurch.

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images via Reuters, Getty Images, NZPA