It was 3am local time in Melbourne. I had forgotten to turn my phone to silent so that any incoming texts or emails to it would not wake me. Instead, that familiar chime came through, waking me. I give myself 2 minutes to decide whether to roll over and go back to sleep – or to clumsily find my way to the phone and check it on the other side of the hotel room.

I’m glad I forgot to turn my silent function on.

A text from my friend Richard was informing me that a huge earthquake had just rocked Christchurch (where he lives). The rest of the morning was spent trying to gather as much information as possible while the city slowly came to terms with just how much damage had been caused. The best information source seemed to be a combination of the talkback radio broadcasting in New Zealand with residents recounting their experience, or Twitter.

An event like this is very surreal. Just hours earlier I had been on the phone to Richard. While we were taking in some late night activities in Melbourne, he was doing some late night gaming – everything was fairly normal.

Christchurch is my home away from home. I’m due to return in November and I’m guaranteed to not like what I find when I get down there. There are two sides to this story though. One is of survival. Miraculously, while there were some serious injuries, no one died. On the other side of the coin, the city will never be the same again.

ActionMan Adam is all based in Christchurch. It’s practically one of the characters in the story. I’m going to keep a close eye on the city as it rebuilds, so I can portray it as accurately as possible. The place won’t look the same, but life will get back to normality, with time.

In the meantime, my thoughts are with everyone who is down there. Let’s hope the city can get back to functioning as fast as it can!

If no one has done it yet, now is probably a good time to stock up on your survival kit!

If you’d like to donate for the people of Canterbury, you can do so by visiting the Red Cross NZ website – which allows you to do it online, or has further instructions for other ways to donate.

Thanks for reading
Marc