After the California shooting

On Friday night I felt like I was playing a part in a movie.

I’d come to Santa Barbara six months ago from Wellington on a student exchange.

I was really excited to become immersed in the Californian lifestyle.

I wanted to go surfing, to drink Californian wine, and have fun at the “Number Two Party School” in the United States.

That night my flatmate and I were going to stay at home to drink wine and watch a movie. My other flatmate was going to go to a party. Everyone else had gone home for the weekend.

On our way to the liquor store my roommate and I reached the street where the shooting had started minutes before.

“Did you hear that?” Asked a man in his early 20s, visibly shaken.

We hadn’t, but we saw the police lights. Curiosity took a hold and we walked towards them.

We stopped an older man standing in the road in a work uniform to ask what had happened.

“There’s been a shooting,” he said.

More gun shots followed his reply.

Yet, it was as if my conscious didn’t want to accept that reality.

Not grasping the severity of the situation, we continued to walk down the street towards the liquor store. Walking the exact path he’d driven.

The idea of gun violence had been a foreign concept to me. It’s something I’d only seen in the movies or on the television news. Continue reading.

Hannah Merritt is a Massey University communications student on an exchange at the University of California Santa Barbara. She lives near the scene of the mass shooting that claimed seven lives on Friday.

Source: The Wireless

Image: Facebook

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