Thoughts on a fantastic weekend – christchurch and sustainability

We went to Christchurch last weekend. It was the South Island champs for the Paper Tigers – if 9 boats constitutes a ‘champs’.

I had a ball on the water. Having not sailed for two months, and not sailed the boat for three, I ws a tad rusty, and had never sailed at the venue – Lyttleton Harbour. I got 7-7-6-5-4-2, suggesting an improvement. Led the last race for 2/3 of it, then let one through. Good fun, very happy.

In between the two days of racing, we went to ‘classics in the park’. What a mixed thing it is. Great organisation, sure it was ‘free’ but the endless commercial touting got to this ‘national radio’ afficionado. Their Symphonia is good – a fuller sound that Dunedin’s, but there is a 5-times catchment. The troupe at the end were pretty slick too.  Also – the crowd atmosphere – even amongst the short-skirt/cap on backwards crowd – was amazing.

On the other side of the coin, I spent a lot of time looking at Chch from a sustainability point of view. They have a lot of things going for them – flat is easy for public transport and bikes, food is not far away (provided it’s still Kiwi owned) and they clearly have a community spirit.

The sheer effort needed though, is mindboggling. The earthquake rates as one of the top-ten insurance events for the planet last year (of all time numerically, but not inflation-adjusted) along with both hits on Australia, but the effort needed to morph that established infrastructure to a sustainable one, within say 10 years eclipses that.

And it’s have to be done under financial, supply and social pressure. I wouldn’t be a City Councill0r at that point – talk about a poisoned chalice. Still, somebody will have to do it, and you can only do the best you can, with the hand you’re dealt.

From what I hear (Wells and Corbett via Nat Radio) they’ve goods hearts but woeful grasp of the physics of what is happening.

Ah well, it was a good weekend. Thanks Bob for the sail, thanks JK for organising, see you all next year.

Hopefully – I might have to sail up>……


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