Thursday, March 17, 2011

Te Pae Tawhiti

Kia ora mai.

I've been waiting and wondering what tone to strike, given the disastrous earthquake that has 'munted' (Kiwi speak for fucked) many parts of the city of Christchurch, where I have been domiciled for too long. But since the even more disastrous Japanese event, I realise I just plug on, turn up to work, write my wee papers and postings, and whistle a merry tune.

Anyways...last night I attended the launch of Nga Pae o te Maramatanga's Maori Economic Development research funding, won by Te Wananga o Awanuiarangi and Ngati Awa. I had the pleasure of sitting next to Shaun Awatere, an economist working for Manaaki Whenua/LandCare Research Ltd. Many sly glances we exchanged...

l-r Maui 'Pretty Boy' Hudson, Jamie 'Pukana' Ataria, Marino 'Book it up' Tahi, Shaun 'Lenin' Awatere.

The 'elephant in the room', pointed out over cocktails in The Library was that 'we're moving beyond the redistribution of wealth'...Hmmm, how would we be moving past that then? Not by some of us being much richer than others!

Aw, the Maori class-system may well have had its most public airing since Ranginui was a Marxist.

Enjoyed a morning with Josie McClutchie and Paul Whitinui, with Josie photgraphing Paul and I for the upcoming Nga Pae report. Unlucky for me, as Paul is better looking, better published, and better connected.

Paul Whitinui hiding beyond large wooden sea-going craft.

I was then interviewed by Chelsea Grootveld for her doctoral research, very interesting and for me quite an emotional interview. A lots been happening lately, and Chelsea's topic (aspects of the Maori middle-class, particularly education) brought out a lot of stories from my past and some concerns for the present and future.

And, being Irish, we met up in The Green Man before flying out. I took a couple of quiet pints of Murphy's stout and a double Bushmills Black on the rocks. Delightful.

Tina and Josie, The Green Man

Back to the job...

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