Tuesday, February 21, 2012

ABC Wed: F for First Anniversary of the Christchurch Earthquake., Thursday Theme Song

Today is the FIRST anniversary of the Earth quake in Christchurch New Zealand. It is on the lips of many, "Where were you on FEBRUARY 22, 2011?"

At 12.51, a terrible earthquake struck our second biggest city. Many buildings FELL, 185 people died, people had FEELINGS of FRUSTRATION.

We wore red and black, Christchurch/Canterbury's colours to show we suffer as a FAMILY. The children in school had to give a gold coin donations for Christchurch Relief FUND The school was a sea of red and black.

I went with my adopted /KAI mum to see the ruins. WE went with my adopted sisters King, Lynn and Peng.

Last August, one week end, I visited friends, and Jenny drove me out to the fringes where the public was allowed it go. It was somber.
Christchurch was a beautiful garden city. Very English and you may be forgiven if you thought you were in England. I first went there in 1978 when my brother Charles and Sis in law Karen took me there. We went punting in the Avon river. You can't do it any more.
Listen to Bruce Springsteen's song.

This post is for all the Canterbians. I am a bereaved mum, and I feel for all the mums whose arms are empty. The people are strong and resilient. they have hope for the FUTURE. FRIENDSHIP were forged and people helped and care for one another. People gave FOOD from the whole country. FIREMAN helped to douse FIRE. People say we will be FINE, we will not be defeated.


I went to the earthquake ravaged city of Christchurch one weekend in August last year, and saw the rubbles. My heart bled to see these historical building turned to ruins. 185 people died in the earthquake on 22 Feb 2011.
Bruce Springsteen's My City of Ruin was adopted by the people of Christchurch as their anthemn.


The song was written in November 2000, for an Asbury Park, New Jersey Christmas show benefit to help promote the revitalization of the city. Once a popular resort destination in the late 1800s and early 1900s, Asbury Park had succumbed to significant amounts of blight for a variety of reasons, including the ill-effects of the Great Depression, the opening of the Garden State Parkway, and race riots.

The song first starts describing the current state of Asbury Park, the deterioration, and the absence of people in the area.

There's a blood red circle
On the cold dark ground
And the rain is falling down
The church doors blown open
I can hear the organ's song
But the congregations gone
Throughout the song, Springsteen continues to describe the city using images such as men loitering on a street corner and buildings with boarded up windows. The song ends, however, on a hopeful and optimistic note by powerfully imploring the city to "rise up" from the decay.

Come on rise up!
Come on rise up!
''Rise up

The song took on an entirely new meaning soon after the September 11 attacks, offering a message of hope and rising from the ruins. The most famous live performance of the song came on September 21, 2001 during the America: A Tribute to Heroes national telethon. With only a guitar and a harmonica, Springsteen opened the program, introducing the number as "a prayer for our fallen brothers and sisters" and modifying a few phrases in the song. He was joined on stage by Patti Scialfa, Steven Van Zandt, Soozie Tyrell, Lisa Lowell and Clarence Clemons. It was included as the first track on the subsequent album released of the telethon performances.





rainfield61 said...

A half Ang Mo also has a Kai Ma.


Ginny Hartzler said...

Bruce Springsteen writes some beautiful ballads, I saw him live many, many years ago. These pictures are so sad. For some reason the gravestones with danger tape wrapped around...and the buildings. Are they making any progress on repairing things or is there no money?

Ann, Chen Jie Xue 陈洁雪 said...

Jenny Yau-Peng Chew:

well, before i left christchurch, that tape around the cemetery is not there anymore, so i guess is reinforced. cbd is cleaned with pop up malls, looks trendy n colorful, that's what Canterburians need at the moment, is your school children in red n black today too? i know the whole chch is.

Ann, Chen Jie Xue 陈洁雪 said...

yes, most of my kids wore red and black. They had to give a gold coin donation. Almost all the teachers wore red and black too. Thanks for information.

These kids whose photos I took were really interesting. I told them I had to take only their back because I did not ask for their parents permission to post their posts on internet. It tunred out quite good when they looked as though they were having one minute of silence.

Leslie: said...

I didn't realize you're a teacher, Ann. Me too, although retired (and working about half of a teacher's hours doing tutoring now). We were all devastated about that earthquake as we think of Aussies and New Zealanders as being just like us Canadians. I'm so glad things are getting better Finally.

abcw team

Chubskulit Rose said...

Love the photos of the children!

Forty Three

Chubskulit, ABC Wednesday Team

Jama said...

It's sad to see those gorgeous buildings are no more there, so much historical value gone in a flash. Hopefully those affected by the earthquake are able to put the past behind and move on with their lives.

ChrisJ said...

Such a sad catastrophe! I visited Christchurch just briefly in 2004. We prayed for the people of the city. It's hard to know what to say -- just rise up, and be blessed in spite of it all.

You asked about my name Flamblogger. I made it up from the name of my village of Flamborough in East Yorkshire, UK, where I spent my young years. The village and its people made an enormous impact on me.

Roger Owen Green said...

Hard to believe that was 12 months ago. Arthur at AmeriNZ.blogspot.com, who has joined ABCW recently, wrote extensively about this at the time.

ROG, ABC Wednesday team

Reader Wil said...

Christchurch was a beautiful city, I hope that the people of this city will live to see it rebuilt. A great tribute to this city, Ann.
Ann, I want to remove my Word Verfication, but I don't know how. Could you tell me what to do? I also asked George. I even tried Google for help, but that is very complicated. I didn't know I had word verfication. I hate it.

MERYL JAFFE, PhD - parent, psychologist, teacher, author... said...

I have been lucky enough to have visited Christchurch and can't believe it's a year already. I am glad to read in your comments that the city is slowly restoring itself physically and mentally and I look forward to visiting again.

Have a great week.

EG CameraGirl said...

Oh my goodness! Was it really a year ago? Amazing how time flies!

Nezzy (Cow Patty Surprise) said...

It saddens my heart to see the destruction of those beautiful buildings but more so the lives that were lost.

The pictures showed the support of the people and the song showed major encouragement to the country.

We had a little earthquake (4.5) here yesterday mornin' at 4:15am. Woke us up, unleveled pictures on the wall but did no real damage.

Goin' through massive destruction like that has to truly embed it into your heart.

God bless ya sweetie and have an amazin' day!!! :o)

My Mind's Eye said...

Oh my goodness has it already been a year since that horrible day.

What a beautiful song by Mr. Springsteen.

We did so like seeing the pictures of Christchurch. The gray stone church is especially beautiful.
Hugs Madi and Mom

Betsy Banks Adams said...

Hi Ann, I get so sad when thinking about Christchurch... It's even harder to see it in ruins so many months later.. And --didn't that city get hit by at least TWO earthquakes? So very very sad...

Bruce Springsteen did write a fabulous song though. Thanks for sharing, Ann.

Ann, Chen Jie Xue 陈洁雪 said...

Hi Madi and all cat lovers,

I forgot to mention that many cats were displaced and also injured. Some were flown to my city Auckland to the vets and some were adopted here.

photowannabe said...

What a sad and terrifying time. Its hard to believe its an entire year ago. I am pleased to see there is a bit of progress. thank you for this sobering update.

The Poet said...

Hello Ann.
I remember seeing this on the news. I can't believe it's already been a year!
Enjoyed reading your reflective post.
Thanks for sharing.

A Flower In My Mirror

George said...

In some ways it's hard to believe that the Christchurch earthquake was a year ago. It's wonderful that your school helped commemorate the event and contribute to the relief fund.

Kathy said...

So much work left to be done.