In September 2010, in the middle of the night, a large earthquake rocked New Zealand's second biggest city, Christchurch. Although it was a strong quake, it was centred outside town and hit in the middle of the night so the damage was limited. No-one was directly killed by the quake and there were few injuries.
Most people were surprised that the earthquake had happened at all, since Christchurch was commonly thought to be one of the few places in New Zealand where a quake was unlikely.
The general consensus was that the city had 'dodged a bullet' - but, unfortunately, about 5 months later in February 2011, another large earthquake hit and this one was in the middle of the working day and centred directly underneath the city centre.
Which was completely destroyed.
Although it was shocking to see the news coverage of the damage and read of the 185 people killed, it's fair to say it didn't really sink in until we were on a road trip in the South Island two years later.
The ruined Cathedral and the damaged buildings were a shock, but what really brought it home were the spray painted notes left by the first responders that still could be seen on the abandoned Starbucks and other buildings.
You are probably wondering what this has to do with scrapbooking.
Well, Daughter-Two was with us on the road trip of course, and she found it fascinating.
She probably won't remember it very clearly if at all once she is older.
But one day (although it seems to be taking an inordinately long time) Christchurch will be rebuilt and will be a completely new city, and she will be fascinated all over again to see the photos we took when we were there. Unlikely if there are stored digitally somewhere, but fortunately for her I always create a physical photobook of our travels that she will have for the rest of her life.
For layouts of our travels I like a clean, graphic, 'magazine-style' look and I used the templates which are at The Lilypad today:
The rest of that road trip, by the way, was pretty amazing as the South Island was blanketed with the deepest snow seen in years.
There was no snow - but plenty of graffiti - on our recent long weekend in Melbourne, Australia visiting family and friends but also enjoying the street art of the very groovy Fitzroy area:
It seemed a good excuse to bring the "Totally Trashed and Vandalized" paperpack to the store as well: