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Kia Kaha – it means “be strong” in the Maori language, it is an affirmation, a call to stand strong in the face of adversity. It conveys a sense of encouragement, so it seems appropriate to include it in a message of condolence to the people of Paris, and indeed France, and to those from all countries who have lost their loved ones after the horrific events of the past weekend.

It is hard to find the words to convey sympathy at any time,  let alone in circumstances like this. Suffice it to say, that Paris will remain my favourite city, other than my own home town of Auckland. Recent events will not quell my desire to return (in fact I will return to celebrate my 65th birthday there in August next year). Terrorism cannot be allowed to prevail. Paris, je t’aime…