Ray Taylor - HIV support in Christchurch
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[00:00:00] This program is brought to you by pride in zero.com. [00:00:05] I am originally from Christchurch, I was born here in 1954, and moved to San Francisco in the 80s. And then back to Oakland, where I lived for 15 years, and then teams and the Coromandel for another few years, and then back to Christchurch in the early 2000s. And I came back to look after my mother and sister who, but at that point in time and state, so for tuned to my roots. So that's, that's a little bit about who I am. [00:00:44] The peer support group [00:00:47] for HIV positive people, when I returned, there was nothing. [00:00:55] No support [00:00:57] group for positive people in Christ, what you say, [00:01:01] would have been probably, well, it was 2001, 2000 [00:01:06] year, probably 2001. [00:01:09] There had been groups, but they had years there were controversies around the mall. And [00:01:20] I'm not, I wasn't involved in them. So I've only had hearsay. And [00:01:27] so this lot talk about those. But they were, as I said, a number of initiatives, both by positive people and [00:01:39] people who sought to support them. [00:01:42] Somewhere, okay, some [00:01:46] most [00:01:49] the foundation, the Newseum days Foundation, [00:01:55] made contact with the clinic here, and the person at the clinic is the counselor at the time. [00:02:04] No, the facilitator, or the manager of the clinic, in Smith, at the time, [00:02:12] invited me to [00:02:16] set up a peer support group for positive people here in Christchurch. Given that I had a history of doing that in other places, so [00:02:29] And I said yes to that. So [00:02:35] at the beginning [00:02:38] Bruce Kilmer from body positive Auckland, came down to Christchurch. [00:02:45] And I don't remember exactly the the beginnings of that. But he came down and there was a luncheon that was held at a hotel that possible welcome paid for. And it was to get positive people together and talk about when they wanted to have, you know, get together. And what they wanted. Basically, [00:03:16] what came out of that meeting was that there was a lot of anger, a lot of frustration. [00:03:23] A lot of [00:03:26] seriously psychotic people [00:03:30] who'd been involved and other [00:03:34] initiatives, [00:03:36] psychotic and, well, [00:03:42] they were just crazy. And but overall, there was a lot of anger toward [00:03:50] the foundation. [00:03:53] The surfaces here on crushed rich and the history involved. [00:03:59] So the meeting really was a pain in the ass. And so [00:04:08] there was a young man there in the cities from [00:04:14] HP. And he had never been involved in any of the support groups. And he had been involved in setting up in corporate societies and trusts and other places for other reasons. And so he offered his services to set up His name was Aaron McDonald. He has since died [00:04:38] about three years ago. [00:04:40] And he took on the setup of the incorporated Society of body positive Canterbury. [00:04:49] So and that [00:04:52] the document that he [00:04:57] put together was dated the 2002. [00:05:03] So that would be the start of body positive category. [00:05:07] Can you describe for me what the benefits are of a peer support group, as opposed to something like the AIDS Foundation? [00:05:17] Well, the AIDS Foundation, it doesn't actually offer support to foster the view. [00:05:25] It offers counseling and, and, and testing, and that's about it, and advocacy. [00:05:35] But there's something about just being with other positive people, we don't have to explain yourself, you don't have to interact with a counselor, you don't have to interact with [00:05:49] someone who could be pushing their own agenda, like a hero or whatever, or someone that [00:05:59] do good. [00:06:01] Want to a bit of it. I know that's a judgment, but that's often what it feels like. And [00:06:08] even, even those people who do their best to separate their own agenda from, [00:06:18] from the surface that that providing really, you know, it doesn't, it doesn't actually feel the same as just having other people. So [00:06:30] and bank and learn quite a lot from other parts of people, because they going through a similar thing. And along similar path. So, for instance, [00:06:44] side effects of medication or [00:06:48] how to deal with them. [00:06:51] Or what they might be, if you're looking at going on to a different medication or new newly going on to medication [00:07:00] services in the community that may be there that the foundation staff know of, but may not even think about, you know, and when you meeting with them, so [00:07:17] but it's mainly just actually being around other people where you don't have to explain where you are, you don't have to say [00:07:25] why you're not working, or why you're not doing this or why you're tired or why you're not able to hit certain things or why you're not able to Why look like you do. There's no, you know, this, it's a very unprofessional situation. And for a lot of people, that's the only time that they actually ever have that is on it. But you know, when they meet with their peers. So that's the benefit. And that's a huge one I can it's [00:07:56] so prior to body positive Canterbury being formed, we're the kind of informal groups that were were meeting [00:08:05] awkward things. They were groupings. There was the man, Colin Dougherty and great who's still in class judge not positive, who is the messenger, and he used to have informal [00:08:22] Sunday, once a month, I think or once every couple of months, Sunday barbecue or something at his house and positive people. And that was one of the the more beneficial ones that had already stopped before I came down. But people that I spoke to, were [00:08:46] only hit good things to say about that. There were others that were started and [00:08:58] I don't know. It's a Yeah, it's best not to go there. But needless to say, there were occasional attempts. But I wasn't aware of any groups as such. How was [00:09:15] it for you coming back to Christ Church and having been on peer support groups and other places? And then not having that from Christchurch? How did it make you feel? [00:09:25] For me? [00:09:28] It was fine. I didn't need it. And [00:09:33] at that point, I didn't need it. And the, [00:09:37] so it wasn't a need that I I hit for myself. So. [00:09:45] So it was purely. I was asked to do it. And I did it for the others. Really? Yeah. In fact, it's actually hard work. So yeah. So all the way it's set up now. [00:10:01] was anything put in place when the incorporated society was formed? That would stop it kind of drifting back into some of the kind of previous times where groups didn't quite work? No, nothing was [00:10:13] set up and as such, but it was, [00:10:18] I think we had more structure probably than the others. And but it came down to us having to place ourselves and [00:10:32] and as you'll see, we get onto plus plus, and the demise of pause plus, that really didn't work. So yeah. So did break down. [00:10:47] What was your role with body positive category? [00:10:51] Well as the cheer of body positive, and was the T right through, and [00:10:59] basically, no one else wanted to do those tasks. Aaron was the treasurer. And we had different people in the role of Secretary. [00:11:12] And how many members [00:11:14] started off with about 1510 to 15. And we end up to about 2025. [00:11:22] And some of those have died, and some have moved away. But the current group is still 25. [00:11:33] What kind of activities Did you undertake, [00:11:36] it was mainly, it was mainly based around a monthly gathering on, it's always been the third Sunday of the month. And it would be a lunch, and there'd be [00:11:51] discussion. And [00:11:55] occasionally there be someone brought in like one of the doctor or someone from the foundation, or a visitor like Bruce would come down from Auckland, [00:12:10] or someone from Australia who may be passing through, and they would talk about different things. [00:12:18] So that was the main thing. Then we had [00:12:23] a weekend for people and, and Stephen and I and the south of the South Island. And that had about 15 to 20. People all mean, and that was [00:12:42] can't remember the place that we had it. But that was for most of the men there, it was the first time that ever meet anyone who was positive. And some of them had been positive for 15 years. So it showed us how isolated people are cell phone, well, and in the middle of the North Island as well. And, and there are no services. So that was a one off event. We were never able to get funding to do any others, even though we tried and [00:13:18] and it was quite difficult to actually get the thing together. [00:13:23] Because of privacy issues and all this and how to get the make the contact, fortunately, the infectious diseases specialist and donate and hospital passed on a notice to all of his [00:13:39] male clients. And that was how we work with to make contact with them. [00:13:45] And they were one of two on our books. But, you know, [00:13:48] that must have been quite an amazing experience meeting people that have not been HIV positive people for years. [00:13:56] Well, it's it's something that I've had experience on for since I've been in the field it for. But [00:14:07] I mean, it's a it's a reality and museum, people outside of the main centers don't have contact network very rarely have contact and don't know what's provided. Because they don't have any way of finding that information. And if they're not on computers, or [00:14:29] don't know about Bob positive or, you know, in they won't. They just don't know what's available for and, [00:14:38] and the specialists don't [00:14:42] I mean that the look after their health, not up to [00:14:48] other things. Yeah. [00:14:50] So what kind of conversations were had on that weekend, [00:14:54] a lot of it has to do with [00:14:58] actually writing this information we found to begin with, so people had very strange ideas about the disease that they had. [00:15:10] I can't give you examples, but there was some very weird, I remember, there was some very weird conversations that had. So we actually basically had to do it in a one on one with these people, and so that everyone was talking from the same song sheet to begin with, and then [00:15:29] we got people to tell this story, really. And so that's how we found out just what has happened to these people, you know, and [00:15:40] and the remarkable abilities that they had to survive. Yeah, that's about very well, yeah. And the telling of the story is really great, because people, everyone has a chance to tell the story. And 10 some went on for a couple of hours, you know, and [00:16:00] they were quite difficult for a lot of people to hear. And so that, you know that [00:16:11] that caused some problems for some people, because they had, [00:16:16] especially the longer term people because they didn't want to have to burn up all that stuff, you know, that all that stuff was so far in the past, and that developed [00:16:29] initiatives to, not to prison necessarily, but to live with the stuff and that it served them well. And here was all been sort of brought up. So it was necessary to sort of take some people aside and just sit with them and and really just say, Well, you know, if that's if it's too difficult, let's go for a walk. And you know, you don't need to actually sit through these things. And but for others, it was really important. [00:17:03] But they all did they all you know, it was just actually a matter of voice, you know, and then they would come back. [00:17:11] Because I think they realized that hearing, the listening was actually just as important as the same. And and so they they realized that it was important for these people to be heard. The stories were important, you know, and [00:17:34] yeah, so yes. So that was a great weekend. And we tried several avenues of getting extra funding for extra weekends. [00:17:50] The one story out of it that was really amazing was this. [00:17:56] The people doing the catering [00:18:00] was a family, a local family. And they killed the lamb, the roast dinner and all this sort of thing. They were farmers, and the mother and daughter and, and husband and son nothing. But the mother daughter and her husband, were all involved in this. And [00:18:23] and we couldn't work out why they were so so involved and wanted to communicate with people and wanted to you know, they weren't pushy or anything but and they were a bit concerned that they may have had some sort of religious agenda water, but that never enjoyed it. And right at the end of the weekend, they were thanked at the end of the weekend, and by the full group, and they then the husband in said that he wanted to tell us the story. And the story was that their son had just come out as a gay man. Like literally, I think that year, and [00:19:10] and they wanted, they wanted to do this so that they could actually learn more, meet more gay men, and learn what it was to be, you know, something about being gay, and [00:19:26] and to be informed about HIV so that they could support their son not become infected. And I thought what was really quite amazing. I mean, you know, they were crying. And when they were saying this, and it was like, pretty full on stuff. So yeah, so it was, it was quite an amazing weekend, right in the middle of nowhere. I mean, it was somewhere, Milton or something like that. What way to hell out in the middle of nowhere? [00:20:00] Didn't [00:20:06] you say that it was hard to get funding? Why? Why do you think that was, [00:20:10] by the foundation gave us some funding towards it, but a minute actually cost quite a lot of money. And to support people to get their number one, you know, it's not easy. And we wanted to do another one, that north of the cell phone. And that would have even been bigger, but [00:20:30] to get the people there was going to be a difficult one. And [00:20:37] that's it think I think the budget was something like $15,000. And, I mean, we had to, um, it was a weekend, we had we brought on a facilitator from Auckland. So there were we all had to get down there. And he had to get down there. And we had to hide the venue, pay for the food, and it needs to be comfortable. It needs to be good. You know, it's no good just having a camp. I mean, it has to be [00:21:07] some that people are not well, and you know, and they need, and they're on benefits and things like that, and why should they, you know, have fish and chips, you know that this doesn't make sense. So we made sure that the food was good, and, and the place was warm, and you know, and clean and all that sort of thing. And, and I mean, building had to be supplied all that sort of stuff. Um, it was quite, it was quite an event. And it's amazing how quickly the name is posted and contacts and phone calls. And it's quite nightmare, really. And getting people from A to B is was the most difficult. [00:21:53] I guess I was wondering, is peer to peer support, seen as a valid think in terms of funders, when they when they're looking to fund something to Did you find that generally in funders? Yes, they were, it was good. We always had funding support from [00:22:12] various trusts around the place. I mean, the work involved in getting those was phenomenal. And that was what created the problems at the end of us. [00:22:23] But [00:22:26] the foundation supported us [00:22:30] with various amounts, but not a lot because they had their own things. And [00:22:37] and we were at our own organization at that point. And we were getting funding, so we never wanted to really tap into this stuff. I mean, they supported us, but and supported us generously. [00:22:51] But you know, it was we prefer to try and get around stuff. One of the problems was that body positivity, Auckland [00:23:03] saw themselves as a national organization, and applied to all the south on [00:23:11] trust. So we would apply it because our name was similar, they would say that we'd already been funded. And when with two different organizations. [00:23:24] And that lead to problems between now organization and what it was the ballclub and also [00:23:34] lead us to change the name to prosperous. So that's still [00:23:42] still difficult and body positive. Auckland never took us off the website as a branch note for about another two years after we changed the name, which was that be stopped. [00:23:59] Me. So when did the name change to pause? Plus? [00:24:02] I think you said 2006, which would be a bit rough. Yeah, it was about two years. Before the end. I think we finished in 2009. [00:24:12] You mentioned earlier on that the chief reasons shop was a really hard one that nobody really wanted to kind of take that on board. [00:24:18] No, no one wanted to take long wasn't hard, is just no one wanted to do. [00:24:26] I was the coordinator of the group. So cheer is just the title that I had, but facilitating or coordinating the group no one else they wanted to come along, they didn't want to actually do the work. So in organizing it or facilitating it. So [00:24:46] we only ever had three people really [00:24:50] involved in organizational aspects of it. [00:24:54] So how much time a week say would you be spending on organizing events [00:24:59] that's a couple of days a month. And that included phone calls with Aaron which will go on for a house and [00:25:10] get to know Aaron and and the other person involved. And then it was coordinating the food and the times we were meeting away for at the beginning remit away from everyone else. And so at the beginning, it was actually at the foundation. So that means going and picking up a key. [00:25:35] And then going back again on the day, I'm locking it, setting it up, cleaning up, then taking the key back on the Monday, all the sort of knots. And then we move to another place. And that involved exactly the same stuff. And, and then finally, I just said I've had enough. And so now the group meets at my house, and it has done some in. [00:26:03] And it's so much easier, but it's [00:26:07] the, like getting the food together. Like all you have to come up with a menu, you have to buy the food you have to or bring it in, you have to go and pick it up, you have to go shopping, you've got to claim, you know, group of gaming coming to your house or, and other people but the game in particular, I mean, you know what it's like, so you've got to clean you've got you know, and [00:26:34] and also, it does need big lighting because of people's immunity and low to maintain stuff. And it's only once a month, but it's still a whole weekend goes and then you've got to, you've got to set it all up, we've got a cop from that food, if it's been caught, and then you've got to host it, and then you've got to clean up. And so all weekend. So it's my holy weekend plus. So uh, but it's works, it's a lot easier doing it that way, then having to go to somewhere [00:27:12] because it's much more pressured. So pause plus, didn't last that much longer than there was only was a couple of years before. [00:27:21] Yeah, the one of the problems was the world, the problem was that Aaron got ill, and seriously on, but changed it up and died. And at the same time, we talked with the membership, and they [00:27:43] they were supportive of continuing on, but not not setting up another organization. And so the foundations that they would support us for the funds for the for the lunch. And, [00:28:03] and so we we never set up another organization, and we just use an umbrella organization to receive the funds. And we just have to do that. And that's not affiliated with any groups. We don't we're not an official organization, [00:28:21] or legal entity. [00:28:25] We don't have any contact with body positive Oakland or positive women in Oakland, or the Wellington group, [00:28:35] the foundation, but we have monthly contact with them because they give us the money, but that's about it. [00:28:44] And it works. It's much easier and takes all the pressure out of it. And yeah. So and it just means that we provide peace support. Full stop, nothing not. So we don't get into the pot ethics, which is pretty nasty between organizations, or can be. And [00:29:08] so that sort of freezes up just look after each other. [00:29:13] So that's, that's the history this. [00:29:17] So the Christ group support group came out of pause plus and what kind of activities to bet to [00:29:25] do it solely it solely provides once a month gathering. Yeah. So there's no, there's no [00:29:38] advocacy, or politics or any of that type of thing involved. Occasionally, we may discuss an issue that that someone wants to talk about. But [00:29:51] again, we don't have contact with any of the other groups. So, you know, they don't they don't contact us, we don't contact them. [00:30:00] How many [00:30:01] members [00:30:02] of be about 25? on the box? We don't get that many. We don't get that many to any one gathering. But we Christmas time was getting close to 20. But we've never had the full 25. Yeah, but there are 25 that get notified when you made that minimum. [00:30:27] So there we are in 2008, 2009. [00:30:31] And suddenly, at the end of 2010, there was a major earthquake in Christchurch. What impact did that first Gareth quite have? Well on you. And also the group. [00:30:44] The first is quite didn't have much of an impact on the group. It all [00:30:51] sit well, not a well, some individual members had problems with their house. [00:31:00] But they were repeatable. And [00:31:05] but none of none of them actually had any major thing [00:31:12] that I remember, after the first one, for me, it was sort of like [00:31:21] the first one was a non event really, compared to the others. But the first one. I mean, it was interesting, and it was you know, it was [00:31:32] scary and all the rest of it, but [00:31:38] there was no damage to the house as and at that point in time. And [00:31:44] we just carried on. Really? Yeah. So there was no, there were no issues after the first one. [00:31:51] Had you ever experienced something like a magnitude 7.1? Earthquake? [00:31:55] No, not really No, not that. No, I've been on the neighborhood is quick, here in Christchurch. And that that was nothing like that at all. [00:32:09] But the See, the second month was far worse. The first one was nothing really I mean, it was at four o'clock in the morning or whatever. And it was just like someone was rocking the be really, but [00:32:25] and the aftermath of it was more bizarre, because it was dark. So there was no power of the air. And alarms, car alarms were going and people were outside sort of talking on the streets and things like that, and and you'd see sort of candles moving in the windows of houses and stuff like that, and [00:32:49] and then there'd be the occasional after shopping thing. But [00:32:54] yeah, after a while, I mean, it's just just back to slavery. Yeah. That [00:33:01] kind of immediate reaction of just walking into the street and having a kind of pitch black with no power. That must be quite surreal. [00:33:10] Well, it is windy in the middle of the city, and you're used to and very quiet. Except for the alarms and things like that, you know, it's like this, you don't have, like, there were lots of takeaway bars and things all around where I used to live, and the refrigeration units would be going all the time. So there was this constant hump, but that'll burn off. So it was just, it was quite strange silence really. And, and, [00:33:40] and because it was in the middle of you know, early morning, [00:33:45] the traffic wasn't around. And so I [00:33:50] was just fortunate that it was the way [00:33:54] I was living and spreading at that point in time. So and the anchor strip. So it's it's very central to the city. So it's basically, actually it's and suddenly [00:34:08] one block away from Broad Street. So [00:34:12] did you think at the time that there would have been casualties from that kind of size with? [00:34:19] wondered, but [00:34:24] I didn't know Really? Yeah. Because there was no damage around us. So all that Germany's rolled up. And it wasn't until the next day, when I ran out the shop was up in and I noticed that all the terminals were down all the way along the road. [00:34:40] Further down, and you know, all this sort of thing and [00:34:46] thinking about this a bit more to this than what meets the eye. [00:34:52] But [00:34:55] yeah, there wasn't, there wasn't a didn't have much of it at all. [00:35:00] In between that is quake and the bigger one, which I call the big one. [00:35:06] We move or I moved and moved into an old Villa on the other side of town. And that Villa had no chimneys Lyft. So that's what I'm down the bricks was still on the roof when we arrived, and they hadn't been cleared off. And they just had top all over the holes. And [00:35:30] that was the only major damage that had been done to [00:35:35] had you moved because of earthquake damage in the food. No, [00:35:38] I moved because the other place was too small. And a friend of mine had come back from France and wanted to stay and and flat together. And so we moved into a bigger place. And it's such a beautiful area where we moved to compared to the other. And when you move to Central. [00:35:58] So going forward, I think six months to a few Bry. We're the big earthquake, which was actually literal magnitude, but quite sort of As [00:36:09] I was saying, that was it was far worse, because it had a bigger impact. And it was [00:36:17] I mean, it was in the afternoon. So it was it was I mean, I was at home on that day and was sitting at the computer. And remember when it started looking down the corridor, and the back of the house was was moving, [00:36:37] swaying back and forth. And the beginning wasn't too bad. I mean, things were falling, and that and then I thought, hang on, and then I stood up. And that was when there were two jobs, very heavy jobs. And they threw me to the floor. So and that was when everything fell over. There was gonna fall. [00:37:03] So [00:37:05] it was quite a strange experience, that one was far worse inexperienced than the other. And [00:37:14] there was no surety at all. I mean, you know, [00:37:19] if you'd been outside, you would have ended up on the ground. And, [00:37:25] and the whole of the inside was trashed, really. So you know, bookshelves, I mean, they it was their fault that we hadn't actually attach them to the wall. But, you know, they were all on the floor boxes everywhere. And things smashed and you know, all the support group. Because we had [00:37:48] like Dennis it and things like that for lunches and that. And that was all that was all gone. [00:37:56] Couple to come open and things are just warming up. [00:38:01] So that was the main damage. I mean, there's damage to the round the [00:38:08] ran the [00:38:10] bulls meet the ceiling, they will correct. [00:38:15] Plastic was falling off and things on their windows broke, broke, cracked, I should say fireplaces, moved that cast the fireplace and started walking out into the road. [00:38:28] Yeah, other than that, that was that was well then, I mean, we had no power, and no storage, no water. So. So this one was far worse. And so [00:38:42] to get water, I had enough in the in the tank, that would slowly come out of the tap. So there was a little bit in there that I could access. And then that dried up. So a news came through that you could actually get water just around the corner. Because the recordings around the MSRP. And it each of the streets, they had water bottles, big stacks of water bottles that you could just go and help yourself. So I went around and got some of those. And [00:39:17] it must have taken a while to actually put in place slow. No, it was very quick. [00:39:21] Yeah, it was the next day. Yeah, that was there. In fact, it was early morning that I went around and got to work. So it had been very fast and getting that service. [00:39:38] There's certainly no search. So you couldn't use the toilets. But there's no water, they couldn't flush the toilet. So you had to break up, [00:39:49] toilets outside and things like that. [00:39:53] Because they were no portaloos and chemical toilets and all that they didn't arrive until well, laughter and the water [00:40:04] wasn't full on for a couple of days, I think. [00:40:09] But we were fortunate where we were and that they the water and sewage came on quite quickly. And although you had to boil the water for drinking and surge. [00:40:22] What what started happening about a week afterwards was you'd have these enormous trucks that will appear on the street at the end of the street and had that be during the sort of [00:40:36] I don't know what they did, but it was either they were sucking the stuff out or they were pushing along or something. But what they were huge things and the noise was phenomenal. And they did it every work almost around us. And then they'd come to the [00:40:54] the main house outside the house. And then you had to go in with a Brook and put it on the toilet. If you didn't as happened with us in that was certain paper and god knows what all over the room. Because the blow something through it. And to clear the pipes. And it was [00:41:16] you know, just that everything everywhere is [00:41:20] not me. So and there's no warning that there be that you know. [00:41:27] So I've got used to let that [00:41:31] just take me back to the time when the earthquake actually happened. How long did it go through? [00:41:37] Seems like forever but wasn't think was that? Listen The minute I think it was listen. But it felt like it was it was quite long. But it was [00:41:51] it was the lead up that sort of black and rolling thing. And then there's two jobs and [00:41:58] and of course the it's not just the main news quake, it's all the it goes on. [00:42:06] The earthquake might only last for the actual earthquake might only last for a matter of seconds. But it seems to be it's like really get off a plane. And you're sort of after a long trip and you feel like you're still moving. It has that sort of sensation. And I think it is actually the ground still moving. And but it's very, it's quite strange. And and then of course you have all the aftershocks. And they start happening within minutes. And, and they can be as intense, or not quite as intense but intense enough. Was there any sound? Oh, yes. Yeah. Sort of rambling. And, and, and low with the jokes. It's like a quite a powerful smack sound, crack, whatever. Yeah, it was quite, quite an interesting [00:43:02] is likely. [00:43:05] When that happens. I mean, I just kind of try and think what would be the first thing that I would do you know, what, how, how would you prioritize? What [00:43:13] What did you do first, it was interesting, because I got up because I thought I better go to the door, you know, because I've got an outside door in my room. And I was heading towards that when I fell when I was thrown over. [00:43:29] And because everything that fallen around us in the house, it was like, an all of that happened in the middle of you know, I mean, I was on the floor, and I thought the house is gonna fall down. And because that's what it felt like, did actually feel like the whole place was like, you know, gonna just take on a lane and go, you know, plenty places did around us. [00:43:59] So the first thing was that I'd heard all these things falling. So I got up and sort of like walking around in the days really, because you've got the adrenaline, and it's like, you're walking around sort of [00:44:15] not knowing exactly, really what you're doing. And so all I did was wander around and just survey what was going on, or what have gone on. And, and, [00:44:27] and then walk around the property. Because there was no point in doing anything. So at that point, [00:44:36] walk around the property and just chicken see that everything was arrived, and then check on the people. Because there's elderly people next door. And, and they were fine. And there were people on the road at that point. And they were also worried about them. [00:44:53] And I realized that they were worried about me because I've now. [00:45:01] So it was quite interesting. So it was one of my first experiences have been regarded by young people has been was quite interesting, in a way. [00:45:14] And it took a while to realize that that you know that what had happened. And I went back inside and started [00:45:23] Well, I mean, the main thing was to get the books out of the way. And so it was just a matter of sticking them on the floor with that for and just create places to walk and, you know, clean up. And then as we have all the glass and crockery and stuff that have broken and so that meant that I had to start cleaning up and [00:45:51] because it was too dangerous and still get bits of glass and stuff and you walk around barefoot, just occasionally. [00:46:00] What about communications? Like, could you access like radio, phone, TV, telephone, telephone, [00:46:06] landline was out? Oh, you just couldn't get through. I mean, it was engaged or you know, whatever. overloaded probably, I could send text occasionally. But even that was overloaded. And occasionally one will get through. And that was it was great, because you knew that, you know, at least because you didn't know, what had happened around. So you know, it was like, when I drove out of the out of our straight, I mean, because at that point, I went, I decided I'd go to [00:46:49] toward the airport to actually check up on my partner's mother. And because he was over and lumbered in his house, and he wouldn't have been able to get there. So, so I started out, going out, and I only got two blocks, and the traffic was in chaos, the road was going to complete Miss and with liquefaction, and that was coming up and and the road was all sort of uneven, and [00:47:23] there were people directing traffic away from that area is the chaos. And I thought this is ridiculous. I'll just go back and [00:47:34] and so as a weird that it was far worse around the asteroid and and then use get started coming in that people have been killed and stuff like that. So I think I'd end on TV or something, I think then come back on so. So yes, so it was a bit of a shock, really. [00:47:55] And what about making contact with the other members of the support group? [00:47:59] Well, that was more difficult. Some of those people and the second one lost the house, and I had no idea where they went. So you know that two people in that situation others [00:48:16] one had to move out your house and, and I had no way of contacting here because I only had a [00:48:24] computer, email or [00:48:28] landline. So that was that was gone. A few people, I was able to get through to a few people by email and by text, and they were fined. [00:48:42] And some took advantage of the New Zealand thing that made out of the city. [00:48:48] One person in particular who needed dressing for things obviously. So he got on a plane and talk and [00:48:58] say, Texas that but the majority of people survive very well. [00:49:06] The head, so is [00:49:11] many of the people in the group [00:49:16] used to go to doctors in the hospital Medical Center. And that whole area, of course was destroyed. And [00:49:26] and for about three weeks, we had no idea where doctors were where those doctors were. And it was quite difficult to get information about with ever going to be with you know, with with the setup was going to be [00:49:45] eventually, where we were able to find out [00:49:50] a hospital, the medications, that seemed to be okay, for most people. [00:49:58] Because most of the pharmacies were intact. [00:50:04] So they didn't have too much of a problem. [00:50:08] people accessing the hospital. Well, if they didn't have a car, then it was a lot. [00:50:16] months, it's a lot harder. But in other senses, it was a lot easier because the one of the hubs for the buses was right outside the hospital. And it was a free bus that would go between the hub. So it was actually a lot easier at that point. And why they've changed it back to where they what they were doing. I have no idea. But [00:50:37] the way that the emergency [00:50:41] saying that that set up was great. It was a perfect sort of saying really [00:50:47] not not only to access the hospital, but just the access to study just made complete sense. Driving was a pain. Because you couldn't you had to go around, and everyone had to go around. And so it was just this constant gridlock going around around the city. And if you had major aftershocks, then you know, people in you know those roads, just I mean, it was a nightmare. You take two or three hours to get on. And whereas it would only take 10 minutes, ordinarily. [00:51:26] But from what I hear most people's survived all of that quite well. They exist family and friends. [00:51:34] I haven't heard of anyone that [00:51:38] that had a major experience, you know, negative experience around it. [00:51:43] You mentioned the high street doctors. Yeah. And I'm thinking if they couldn't give them those practices, did that mean that the patient records had gone as well? I have no idea. [00:51:55] I don't know how they go. Mine is still there. So I don't know how they expect you can still access your records. Yeah. So they've set up elsewhere. [00:52:07] And he seems to have all the records. [00:52:11] How soon after that February earthquake did the group meet up again, [00:52:16] I don't even know what that is click on 22nd. So it was it was. So that would have been the few days after the group MIT. [00:52:27] So we wouldn't have met up again until the March, which was a good thing. Because I wouldn't have been able to get food and things. [00:52:36] When you met. What was the mood like? It's difficult [00:52:39] because the one person that we knew that had one of the people that we knew, who had lost his house and everything. And so the whole thing collapsed. [00:52:53] There was an old [00:52:56] an old house that he had renovated [00:53:00] over a number of years, and all those goods. So computer and everything's gone. So. [00:53:11] So those, I mean, and then you start hearing the stories of the authors of what had been happening with the others as well. So everyone has a story about something that had happened. And it was important just to, you know, allow that discussion to happen. [00:53:30] And so for the next two or three months, really that was the focus of the meetings was just talking about loves me. And it still comes up occasionally, but not so much now [00:53:43] seems to have seems to have settled down. Along with along with the youth. [00:53:52] This the month we've on does the psychology of living in a city where things have been broken or people died, does that have an impact through defined as a higher level of stress or other kind of emotions that are coming through? [00:54:10] Not sure about whether it's a psychology of being in the city where people have died, I think it's I think it's [00:54:19] necessary city that's now unstable. Whereas we thought it was stable. [00:54:25] So it's that unknown thing. So like, I noticed that there, this building creaks a lot. So and when people walk next door seems to sort of shake a little bit. And those sort of things. interesting to me, I find that I react to those. [00:54:51] When I was in Wellington, it was horrified walking around your city. [00:54:57] absolutely horrified. [00:55:00] Anyone that would walk around this place needs the address. [00:55:04] And [00:55:08] here [00:55:10] the thing I've noticed for myself as as Manny driving, so you have to know be going [00:55:19] the road, pulling in places. [00:55:23] There are always new roadworks and so sometimes you've got detours and all sorts of things that just appear out, you know, one day, gone the next. But [00:55:37] you also have people that I keep joking that the new speed limit and cross teachers 10 kilometers lyst the model should be. And so people seem to go to whenever there's a road code, and they seem to reduce the speed down 10 kilometers, whenever there's a Conan the road, wherever, whether there's a sign or not. And occasionally, you'll get elderly people who are driving. And of course, for them, the city has changed [00:56:15] completely and you know, the landmarks are gone. And so they have no idea where they're going. And, [00:56:22] and so they're driving, the driving is sort of spontaneous, so they come to a corner, and they need to do in Lyft, because they've just realized that if they don't turn Lyft here, they'll never get, you know, to where they want to go. And so this [00:56:38] or that going along with duty kilometers an hour, trying to find with me to go and stuff like that, when you rushing or needing to get somewhere or know the road very well. [00:56:53] Then it gets really, you know, it gets tiresome to have to put up with it. [00:57:00] And that's the only the only I can appreciate. And usually, once I find out that that's that sort of dissipates. But it's the people who aren't old, are just dead and or rubberneckers. And that part of it, I just find myself getting quite irritated. And [00:57:25] and people do some really strange things when they get irritated. And I've seen myself doing that as well. And, like passing and really strange places and, and, you know, tooting horns and things like that. [00:57:40] So yeah, so I've noticed that. So there's a lot more irritability. And [00:57:48] the other thing is, people that haven't been through the earthquakes, who live here, coming back. And I've had the experience now, but every step and you and [00:58:05] and [00:58:08] after every one of them, I've had people will arrive back, who haven't been in. And then this is an system talking about this net and all the rest and and when there's an earthquake, it's an aftershock. What's that? You know, it's, it's that this whole thing, you know, and then there's this long they launched off into this further dialogue of, you know, this debt and all the rest and about their aftershock. And that's that, that's just an after show, come on, you know, and, and that gets it, I appreciate it, the balance gets quite tiresome, you know, and especially when it's the same people who keep coming back, and they seem to have come back after every quake, and never been any of them and, [00:58:57] and how's it write offs and things like that, but it's just that place? It just gets, I mean, I find myself getting tired of that room. And [00:59:11] I don't know, there's only so much you can say about it. [00:59:16] After having said all that, [00:59:19] what about within the peer support group has the dynamic changed has I'm when is we know what a year ago, but after the second big earthquake, [00:59:30] the dynamic has changed is that what started happening was that people started doing the dishes, cleaning up after, they seem to be a lot more. [00:59:41] So [00:59:43] soon for what people are going through willingness to listen to what was going on. [00:59:52] As well as irritability. And so there is. [00:59:58] But overall, this seems to be a sort of a [01:00:05] more consume nothing for each other. [01:00:08] I don't know, I can't put my finger on it. But there seems to be a different. And I don't know what it is. But there is a different [01:00:17] I think, because most of them live through all of these quakes. So you know, and it does seem to be something and people that have lived through them, it seems to be an unspoken [01:00:32] bond or something that occurs there. And you don't actually have to say very much. And it's just, you just get on live, laugh and interact with each other, but it's on a different level, it's on a different scenario. [01:00:49] I don't quite understand that. But I think it's not be something like being in a peer support group for people with HIV. You've got commonality. So a common shared experience and [01:01:08] I don't quite understand [01:01:12] one of the things that I mean I don't use the venues that gave in use [01:01:18] in Christchurch, but [01:01:21] certainly friends of mine do and certainly people at the in the group do. And [01:01:28] so there was this [01:01:31] period of [01:01:34] not hearing any sort of [01:01:38] venues really where they could meet. And so that really brings up sort of questions around six onsite menus and things like that. And so where do you what do you do at that point in time? You know, so it's sort of like going back 30 years because of the bars and gone and all the news is gone. So some of the all the mall some of the beats went there [01:02:07] because they're closed as well so all the public toilets that have been closed for months and so the only one that actually still operated was the beach. The beaches so [01:02:20] so fortunately probably for many people it was summertime but [01:02:27] I think online dating probably accounted for more contacts I don't know [01:02:35] I don't know where people wind will have a fulfilled detonate but certainly [01:02:42] there has been there have been two now sit up and both three [01:02:48] so cruise bar was set up again and then after a few the aftershock was closed because of the building next door but it's not reopen the sauna and the to the box I think it was called six months I've been they both closed because the buildings were in the inner city [01:03:15] and are now see that what I've heard that the box and well know there's there was a new place that opened closet and set up by someone from Auckland. And [01:03:29] and that [01:03:32] the reports that I read of that [01:03:36] were [01:03:38] less than favorable in a way because it seemed like it was set up on us on a shoestring and that they were wanting people to go there and then with the money that they got, they would do further innovation. So it seemed like it was a constant thing of a building site in some ways, which may have had its own its own appeal but [01:04:01] so interesting. It's an interesting thing really that these people that used to use the sensor head actually defined other ways of making people
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