Dennis took me to see the heart of Christchurch on one of the days I was there. He pointed out how almost all the tall buildings were gone. What struck me was how quiet the city was. There wasn't any sound of cars or people. It felt post apocalyptic. We went to the square where the famous cathedral was. There has been large disagreements on whether to rebuild it entirely or to repair what is still there. So four years on it still sits in pieces.
A replacement worship space has been built not too far away. It is called the cardboard cathedral. Much of it is made of cardboard, including the seats and the cross above the alter. We walked in while the choir was rehearsing, which was a treat.
There are other significant buildings that don't get the same attention as the cathedral. Here is the Catholic church building that also was destroyed.
In the meantime, Christchurch has come up with a pretty clever solution for the lack buildings. Shipping crates! They've used shipping crates to house everything from shops, to cafes, to banks. I personally think that even as they rebuild, it would be smart to have a part of the city remain in shipping crates as a tourist draw. Many businesses moved out of the downtown and do not plan to go back. A shipping crate city would certainly be worth visiting and would help the city build up again.
Meanwhile, jobs on the farm continued. I learned how to use two different mowers. The small riding mower and the large mower on the back of the tractor. Lessons continued with understanding how high the rev count had to be in order to not stall out the tractor while mowing.
Maintenance in the lovely backyard included digging up all the bricks that had been overgrown by the lawn and relaying many of them so they wouldn't be as sunken. Every time I was in between jobs on the farm, I'd head to the backyards to work more on the bricks. I'm proud to say that all the bricks were eventually dug out and many of them were raised before I left the farm.