Then 50-year-old medical secretary and 16 year old school student
My daughter and I were supposed to be visiting at the hospital but had stayed to play a neighbour’s new piano.
The boys had gone fishing early so they were having a nap.
Ben was dreaming about surfing and the board started to shudder and woke him up. A marble mantelpiece fell down in their bedroom and then the boys came rushing onto the balcony. I was frantic because I thought our balcony would collapse.
It sounded like a plane crash. None of us thought it was an earthquake.
Our house was condemned and we had to stay at my sister’s house. We were told that the house was to be demolished in one and a half hours time. We were handed garbage bags and told we had one hour to remove everything.
The removalists took some furniture but their storage site was flooded and we ended up losing that too.
We weren’t allowed upstairs as they had collapsed. We lost everything.
It was so devastating. The neighbour we had been visiting was going to the Workers Club to renew her membership that morning but had postponed to listen to the piano.
She thanked us for saving her life because she would have been in the collapsed pokies room at 10:27am.