i really don't know what to say. sat in my office trying not to cry (and not entirely successful at that), listening as the news came in. death and devastation in region barely recovered from the last lot of earthquakes, and so much worse than last time. i wonder how many cantabrians are going to get through the night, i know there won't be much sleep for them. not tonight & not for quite a few nights.
i'm sitting here in my comfortable bed, in my intact house, & wishing i could at least offer a family a place to stay. a nice hot shower & toilets that work, a night's sleep without fear of aftershocks.
we had a meeting at my place tonight of members of the waikato interfaith council. we were planning for the 2012 interfaith forum, but took time to have some silence and prayers for the people of christchurch. time for us to shed tears together and think about what practical support we can offer. time to share bits of news and comfort each other, even though we aren't actually the ones suffering.
i'd like to acknowledge and personally thank a whole heap of people. the search & rescue teams. the police. the army. the fire service. members of the public who are pulling their sleeves up and doing what they can to support the rescue effort. the medical teams at hospitals and shelters. those who are supporting friends and neighbours. public servants and civil defence staff. all those who work in the media, including camera operators, producers, journalists, technicians & any others behind the scenes getting the information to us. workers for NGOs and faith groups, offering whatever support they can. those organising shelter for people who have no home left. those working frantically to get communication services and power working again.
and to anyone i've missed who is doing what they can to help out, whether in a big or small way. thank you for doing what i'm unable to do. thank you for your courage and determination, your strength & presence of mind. thank you for making a difference.
finally, to those suffering from physical injury, shock, trauma and fear, i wish you well and sincerely hope that your situation improves soon. for those who have suffered the loss of a loved one or unable to find someone, my condolences. i wish i could offer you comfort or ease.