I'm in Christchurch, NZ this week. This country is as beautiful as you imagine. The light (on a sunny day) makes all the shapes in nature seem cut from a picture and placed in a tableau. Otherworldly - in a good way.
Christchurch has also emerged from a horrendous experience. The earthquake here, if measured in G forces, was one of the most powerful to hit a modern city - ever. People I've met are moving on with daily life, but there's a real feeling of post trauma. It reminds me of NYC after 911 - there is a heightened sense of anxiety and "what if," or worse, "when next."
Conversely, it reminds me of the resilient nature of mankind. I had a conversation with a woman here and we found ourselves discussing the "can do" spirit prevalent in human nature. Even in the face of terrible odds most people keep moving toward something, if just life. I admire the people I've met here and I'm betting on this city coming through this tragedy stronger than ever. Someone said recently that it's good to have faith in God, but don't forget God has faith in us. I have faith this city is going places. Can't wait to come back!