Thursday, August 19, 2010

Learning a little history...

Massive Maori Canoe at Waitangi Treaty Grounds

Last weekend wast spent north of Auckland in Kerikeri with Rotarian John and his wife Jose.  This was my first foray out of Auckland and I was very excited to see more of the country. We stayed with family friends of theirs Warrick and Penny who are also involved with Rotary.They own a kiwi (the fruit) orchard and until this past weekend, I don't think I could have told you what a kiwi tree looks like!

It was a fairly rainy weekend (surprise) but I was still able to do a lot of touristing. John and Jose took me to Waitangi where we took a ferry to Russel (NZ's first capital). Russel was settled by European whalers but is now a quaint little town with an amazing view of the ocean. We then returned to Waitangi to visit the Treaty Grounds where, you guessed it, the Treaty of Waitangi was signed!

The Treaty of Waitangi is essentially a peace treaty between the Maori and the British Crown giving the Maori ownership of their own land and giving them the same rights of British subjects. The grounds have been maintained beautifully and we enjoyed a lovely lunch there.
The stump of a Kauri tree used to make the above Canoe!

Obviously there is so much more to say about the Treaty Grounds, but if I give it all away, how will I entice you all to come visit for yourselves? This weekend I'm having the only other two female exchange students over to my house. Oriane is from Belgium and Solene is from France. It should be a lot of fun, even if we have to wake up for an 8:00am Rotary Meeting the next day!!

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