Time to Make Matariki A Public Holiday
The call is growing stronger for the New Zealand Government to create an official public holiday around Matariki. This time of the year is other-wise well known as mid-winter or winter Solstice. I would be delighted if the Crown actually took this on and integrated it into law. I actually think it may happen, eventually. John Key seemed to laugh it off when he was asked about it, but there are a few good reasons Matariki would make a great break. Allocating a day or two to Matariki would be a strong salute to the Crown’s treaty partner; it would be another step towards developing our own, unique identity as Aotearoa/New Zealand; it would be a chance to slow down at a time when many are down and out with colds anyway; it could potentially make for a great tourism draw-card (think mid-winter hangi feasts!) and we would finally have an official mid-winter celebration, hence the excuse to enjoy a good feed of mid-winter kai with our loved ones. What do you think? I reckon it’s a goer.
Jo Tito is a Maori wahine living in the North Island of New Zealand. She’s a full time artist and she has some powerful words and imagery to share about who she is, and the strengths of her people.
Some thing that is adding to the strength of the Central North Island economy is the recent snow fall, it’s just what they needed (TV3.co.nz).
And it’s official – the inherent need we feel to follow our heart, or our emotions, is spot on. Research shows that actions inspired by emotions are more likely to prove satisfying (sciencedaily.com).
Does your heart tell you to check out this ‘amazing’ picture? It’s taken from space and it’s a photo of a volcanic eruption at the early stage, pushing a plume of ash and steam skyward and creating a shock wave through the atmosphere (livescience.com).
This would have made for a fantastic surprise – a thirty five thousand year old flute has been found in a cave in Germany, it’s thought to be the oldest known musical instrument in the world (L.A. Times)
Onto positive environmental news now – good on that Craig Carson! He’s won an Old Blue award for his long standing efforts to protect the wilderness areas in Southland as Chair of Forest and Bird’s Southland Branch (Forest and Bird).
New Zealand Insurance is giving us reason to celebrate, they’ve set a very green example with their new Auckland based Insurance building – we’re talking - lifts that generate energy as they descend, a roof top garden, rain water being captured and reused as grey water, and more … (NZ Herald).
There’s a new design of washing machine comin’ to town - it uses one cup of water to wash clothes, and leaves clothes virtually dry (timesonline.co.uk).
Here’s another reason to feel good, after a one hundred and thirty nine years leave of absence, the large billed reed warbler has reappeared near Bangkok (Happynews.com).
More good news about birds – researchers exploring a Cambodian Mountain range happened across the colourful Yariguies Brush-Finch bird, which had been previously unknown to science (msnbc.com).
Also, increasing numbers of European villages are taking part in the protection of storks via the ‘European Stork Villages’ initiative (Euronatur.org).
Finally, Mercedes, Toyota and BMW are showing off their electric cars in a UK government scheme designed to boost availability of low carbon cars to buyers (TV3.co.nz)