SEA Currents: Robert C. Seamans
December 09, 2014
With New Friends Comes New Culture
45° 52.7’S x 170° 30.8’E
Wind, clouds and drizzle
Sail Plan & Course/Speed
Alongside in Dunedin
As I sat around the breakfast table this morning, our second full day in Dunedin, I could see the exhaustion I felt on the faces of my shipmates. Port life is hard. We have all gotten used to our watch rotations at sea and sleep better when the ship sways beneath us. I speak only for myself when I say that being in port is equally fabulous and horrible. It provides us with the chance to visit amazing places, meet wonderful new people, and contact our loved ones back home. However those wonderful things come hand in hand with hoards of people, loud noises, and a fast paced world we are no longer use to.
But I digress; today we were fortunate enough to visit an authentic iwi jade workshop where we learned about the art of carving. In addition, we were taught how to weave a flower out of flax. Afterwards, we explored the Toitu Otago Settlers Museum. This is where our Maori knowledge keeper instructed us on proper behavior for our visit to the Karitane Marae tomorrow. We are all very excited to learn more about the Maori culture and traditions.
Specifically, we were taught the hongi, which is an act done in greeting another. It is the act of shaking hands and then touching forehead to forehead and nose to nose. This act is done to share the breath of life. I
will do my best to recall the story from memory: The first woman was created from the earth and she was thus encumbered within the earth. She was only released when this act was performed upon her. She then called it the breath of life and was no longer encumbered by the earth.
To my family and friends back home I love you and miss you all, and yes Mom I am being safe. – Ky
P.S Hey Dad, I dropped my phone in the ocean. My NZ phone isn’t as water proof as my US phone! I will call you when I pick up a new one! Love you and Mom! Your loving Daughter, Breezy