i was fortunate to happen across the broadcast on PBS of richard bangs' series "Adventures With Purpose," this installment focused on new zealand. richard bangs is legendary among kayaking and whitewater enthusiasts for his skill and daring in seeking out first descents of extremely challenging, even lethal, rivers around the world. at least, during his youth. he has aged wisely, and devotes his time and energy to promoting adventure tourism which is in harmony with the environment and local ecology. i was particularly taken by the new zealand episode, since that nation is high on my list of fantasy destinations. the hour-long tour emphasized not only the stunning natural beauty of the country (seen in the epic "The Lord of the Rings" film trilogy), but also explored the history and present state of kiwi/maori culture. new zealand is foremost among world nations in revering and protecting the natural environment. this activism combines traditional maori values with enlightened attention to science, resulting in an ethos of stewardship which the rest of the world would do well to emulate.