As promised, here is my homage to New Zealand to celebrate Waitangi Day.
Here is a link that will give you the full run down on the treaty of Waitangi, the founding document of New Zealand. February 6th marks the anniversary of the treaty signing in 1840 and while the treaty is still contraversial due to conflict about it’s interpretation the day is recognized annually as our National Day.
It’s funny actually, we don’t celebrate Waitangi Day in the same way Australians mark Australia Day. Sure, we get the day off work and many people head out of town for the long weekend but NZers are pretty low key about many things… and unless you come across a group of expatriates in Leicester Square on Feb 6th you might not actually notice celebrations going on… Especially not in New Zealand itself…
Anyway, regardless of your take on the whole Waitangi thing there are a million reasons to celebrate New Zealand.
- It is quite possibly the most stunningly beautiful country in the South Pacific, if not the world.
- The New Zealand people are some of the most hospitable and welcoming people you will ever meet. It is not unusual for friends or neighbours to drop in at any time and be offered meals or even beds for the night. Even better, strangers will be welcomed the same way.
- New Zealanders are as sports crazy as the Australians, but for the NZers, their fortunes rise and fall with the fortunes of our National Rugby Union team, the All Blacks. A loss to the boys is like a dark cloud going over the sun!
- New Zealand is a South Pacific nation and the culture is heavily influenced by the other cultures in that region, music and food shares many characteristics with its island neighbours.
The truth is, I could go on all day… as I am sure you could about your home, but I am so proud to be a Kiwi, and even though my chosen home is Australia, my heart will always belong to New Zealand first.