By Subhash K. Jha
Mumbai, March 7 (IANS) Its Preity Zinta who usually charms people wherever she goes, but this time around, the Bollywood actress was absolutely impressed by New Zealand Prime Minister John Key when they met in Wellington and talked about cricket and India.
She could't stop praising him, saying: "John Key is so young and so charming. It was a pleasure meeting him. He's extremely dynamic and so much loved by the people. So down-to-earth and so interested in India and Indians."
Key and Preity had a good half-an-hour rendezvous Thursday.
"I'm surprised at how clued-in he is to happenings and developments in our country. He used to be an investment banker earlier. We talked about cricket and India. The prime minister hosted a reception for the Indian and New Zealand cricket team and a couple of dignitaries including yours truly. It was awesome. I felt so proud of our Indian cricketers wearing their jackets and all," Preity told IANS.
The actress-entrepreneur Preity had a whale of a time in New Zealand and indulged in outdoor sports.
"This trip is a never-ending rush of adrenaline for me. I'm so happy to be here. They took me around on a helicopter. I did bungee jumping and skydiving. I'm here in New Zealand on the invitation of Cricket New Zealand and New Zealand Tourism board. I'm here to see the India-New Zealand cricket matches," she said.
Preity has gone solo to New Zealand. "I'm alone and having a ball. I love adventure sports. And I love New Zealand. I shot my first film 'Soldier' and subsequently two Telugu films here. It's the land of 'The Lord Of The Rings'. But it's also a rugged adrenaline-racing country."
On a more sober note, Preity, who is co-owner of the Indian Premier League (IPL) team Kings XI Pinjab, is still horrified by the attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team in Lahore.
"It's a horrific occurrence not just for cricket but sports in general. What can I say? My prayers are with the families of the cops who lost their lives. They're the first to be forgotten. Terrorism has no home today. It can happen anywhere. But let's not get cowed down. It's important for us to not live in the shadow of fear. They can't kill our spirit," she said.