Matariki – the Māori New Year

Happy Matariki everyone!

For those who aren’t aware, Matariki is the Māori name for Pleiades, an internationally recognised galactic cluster which can be viewed from anywhere in the world.  The rise of the Matariki star cluster is an important time in the Māori calendar as it signifies the Māori New Year.

I love this description as found on the Matariki Festival website:  It is a time to be with family and friends, to reflect on the past, to celebrate those who are not with us anymore and prepare for the year ahead. 

I feel so lucky to live in a country that has a unique celebration such as Matariki.  Irrespective of the fact that I am not Māori, I greatly respect the sentiment of this celebration and find a sense of connection through its meaning.

It makes me feel grateful for my loved ones.  The last month has been extremely busy for me (juggling work, study, home life), so I appreciate everyone who has been there for me during the hard days.

Love you Grandpa!

It makes me feel grateful for my past.  Recently I reflected on all the part time jobs I had as a teen and student.  It taught me the value of hard work and the importance developing a work ethic.

It makes me celebrate those who have passed.  I am thinking of you Grandpa and your smiling face.  The way you used to pot around in the shed and garage for hours on end.  The random croquet set and skateboard you had lying around!

It makes me prepare for the times ahead.  I have work projects and research to pursue.  But more importantly I have great plans to travel with my partner and family.

In the spirit of Matariki, I leave you with some uplifting music.  This evening my ukulele group jammed along to “Poi E”, a true Kiwi classic.  I apologise for the hokey video quality, and for not being able to see any faces too.  But hey, at least you can hear the music.

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