Thursday, 1 November 2012

My A-Z of Aotearoa

My little family and I have been living in New Zealand for 18months (lovely Hubby was here 7 months before us but thats another story). We were all born in Scotland and have lived there all our lives apart from wee Archie boy who was born here in Paraparaumu. Although he was born in New Zealand recent changes mean that he is British whereas in the last he would have been classed as a kiwi and granted an automatic N.Z. Passport, most frustrating but nevermind.

Anyhoo, the point of this blog is to begin my A-Z of Aotearoa! Changing country and sides of the world has had it's good and not so good points BUT we are great believers in the old adage 'nothing ventured nothing gained'.

I thought it might be interesting (or not) to share some of the things we have learned or found as an expat family in the form of an A-Z. So let's begin at the beginning ...
A is for ...

New Zealand by another name ... Aotearoa, the Maori name in fact. It is pronounced (to my ears) altearrrrrroa. Maori words are good for us Scottish people as we are good at rolling our rrrrrrrrrrs apparently!

Aotearoa is made up of the North and the South Island. Maori legend states that Maui (the son of Tane Mahuta the god of the land/forest) went fishing with his nanas jaw bone and caught a massive sting ray which became the North Island, his boat is the South Island and the anchor is Stewart Island. Maui's brother hacked up the sting ray after Maui caught it which created all the mountains and valleys on the North Island.

These stories and legends are awesome. Hopefully I will learn more and be able to share what I learn. Meanwhile I will. Bring the letter B to you guys soon ...

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