Just saw a report on the devastation...Christchurch looked worse than a warzone from the clips that were shown.
It's times like this that I'm glad I live in the middle of nowhere, not near tectonic plates, the ocean etc. Tornado alley is bad enough, but at least you can go underground to escape them...in an earthquake there is no where safe to go.
I thought I saw you post once that you lived in the midwest.....if you do then you do have things to worry about. They just aren't as noticeable or as frequent in happening. The midwest has a fault line that is active and there was a huge quake there I think just before the turn of the century...that had the area been more populated would have been devastating....as it was it released toxic gasses that killed some locals. Also, you should be aware that it is true that Yellowstone is truly a massive volcano that is scheduled to once again wake sometime around now. If it were to go up it would have truly devastating consequences for the United States and indeed the world ( I'm not a 2012 crazy...the volcano simply exists like Mt. St Helens ).
At any rate I wish New Zealand the best and offer my condolences to the family's of those lost and affected.
"Tho' much is taken, much abides; and though we are not now that strength which in old days moved Earth and Heaven; that which we are, we are; One equal temper of heroic hearts, made weak by time and fate, but strong in will." -Tennyson