Honolulu, earthquakes, and films

buildingRemember how I said in my intro video that I’m no longer the crazy traumatised earthquake woman? How I’d moved on from that and no longer felt anxious about earthquakes? Well, I lied.

I’m currently staying in a high-rise hotel in Hawaii that has a bit of a CTV-building look to it. At least, it looks to be of a similar vintage to the CTV building. The CTV building was finished in 1986 and this hotel looks about the same age maybe older. I’m no structural engineer but the outside of the hotel does not inspire confidence. If there are any structural engineers reading this then feel free to reassure me 🙂 The CTV building became a coffin for 115 people during a 6.3 magnitude aftershock in Christchurch.

I asked the people in reception whether the building had been earthquake-strengthened and got a blank look in response which probably means no.

Hawaii – Honolulu to be specific – is not what I was expecting. I wasn’t expecting it to be so built-up. Indeed I was surprised to see all the high-rise buildings. It’s got more of a Gold Coast feel to it than a Sunshine Coast. The Gold Coast, which is south-east of Brisbane, is very developed and filled with high-rise buildings. By comparison, the Sunshine Coast, which is north-east of Brisbane, has more of a holiday feel. It doesn’t really feel like a city at all and so you get the sense that you have escaped from the big smog to somewhere quieter and more peaceful. Honolulu is really just a big city.

The beach here is quite nice. I have been swimming already and the water is very warm. Quite a bit warmer than the ocean around Auckland. I’ve already managed to pick up some grass skirts so my job here is done 😉

I didn’t end up bawling my eyes out on the plane. In fact, I only shed a tear once and this was because I watched a fascinating film called Tracks. It’s the true story of an Australian woman – Robyn Davidson – who walked from Alice Springs all the way to the Indian Ocean with just a dog and three camels. It was a 1700 mile journey through harsh desert. Quite a remarkable story. The sad bit was (spoiler alert) that part-way through the journey her dog died. If I’d known the dog was going to die I wouldn’t have watched it.

I also watched The Invisible Woman, a moving film about Charles Dickens and his relationship with a much younger woman. Here’s a quote from the end:

This is a tale of woe, this is a tale of sorrow, a love denied, a love restored to live beyond tomorrow. Lest we think silence is the place to hide a heavy heart, remember to love and be loved is life itself, without which we are naught.