This morning I had the great pleasure of being interviewed on CBC Radio Yukon's "A New Day". Dogsled Stacie was there, too! We were being interviewed about Air New Zealand's "Coldest Canadian" contest.
Of course, I always think of the things I should have said after the interview is over. I mean, what can you say about what's going on in Christchurch right now? It's awful, and thoughts and prayers seem insufficient.
New Zealand and Canada are connected by more than an Air New Zealand flight from Vancouver to Aukland. And we're connected by more than our love for the Lord of the Rings movies. We are connected by the friends and family we Canadians have in New Zealand, and by New Zealanders who are visiting and living in Canada. And we are connected by a history of compassion for each other.
In 1916, after the Centre Block of our Parliament Buildings burned down, New Zealand sent wood. We didn't need the wood. We've got lots of wood! But we needed the gesture. The wood was meant to help us rebuild, and that's exactly what we did with it.
After the initial earthquake relief efforts are over with, it will be New Zealand's time to rebuild. I would like to go there and bring something to help with that. I don't know what, yet, but something.
In the meantime, maybe the contestants in the Coldest Canadian contest - a bunch of Canadians who are doing ridiculous things in their attempts to get to an amazing country - are sharing something that New Zealanders sorely need right now.
A excuse to laugh.