‘The Shocking Earth Quake’- Aprille, 11, Ladbrooks School

On Saturday morning September 4 I woke to shaking all around me. I heard a glass smash beside me and I could hear the rattling of the windows. I was half asleep and I didn’t know what was happening so I thought that it was a big storm. Then I heard Jeanne scream “Ahhhhhh” in a terrified voice. I heard Dad running down the hallway then shout, “Get outside”. By then I was standing under my doorway getting knocked around. I couldn’t see very well but I saw the front door had been opened. I ran outside onto the freezing frosty grass. Georgia ran out close behind me. Dad came out next then Mum with Jeanne under her arm. She tripped on the front door and landed on her knee. Finally we were all outside. My feet were so cold I thought my toes could fall off but I was too shocked to think about that. I could still hear the house rattling away. We sat close on the doorstep thinking of what happened. We were shivering in our pyjamas. Dad decided to go inside to get a torch and some jackets. We told dad not to go back in but he did. Monty our dog was barking loudly not knowing what was happening. Next door we saw some lights go on and heard people talking. Dad had come back with the jackets and a torch plus the car keys. We got into the car and waited. When it was a little bit lighter I went with my dad inside to see what the damage was. In my room my big white wardrobe had fallen over and had snapped the door and everything had fallen off my shelf. Next we went into my sister Georgia’s room. Her drawers had fallen down and her books were on the ground. There was not so much damage in my parent’s room or my other sister Jeanne’s room. The kitchen was fine but everything in the office desk including the computer had fallen off. Later that day Claire my sister’s friend came around and we went for a bike ride down to the school. We saw these strange sand volcanoes that had popped up from the ground and had made cracks in the road. We went to the school and looked through the windows to see if anything was broken but we saw only a plate had broken in the staffroom and a bookshelf had fallen over in another classroom. We biked back for dinner. We still didn’t have power so it was difficult. So we got out some candles and lit them. It was scary when there was an aftershock because we thought the candles would fall over so we blew them out. The next day we went for a drive in the car to see what damage there was. First we went to Halswell and saw a big crack down the road and across the bridge near the Halswell planting site. We saw that there was a lot of flooding and the water in the stream was very high. In Halswell some fences had fallen over and the Halswell School tree had to get chopped down. When we had finished looking we took the road to Tai Tapu. We took some pictures of a big shed that had been bent from the earthquake and took a picture of a paddock filled with big sand volcanoes. The next days were fun without school but the aftershocks where scary and it was hard to cope without the power but it came right in a few more days.

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