Ngāi Tahu migration and waiata wānanga

We kicked off our first wānanga on 29-30 June at Te Ara o Tawhaki Marae, EIT, Napier. We were blessed to have among us Maani Stirling, Teone Sciascia and Arapata Reuben from Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu.

Our mihimihi introduced our Ngāi Tahu guests and Maani was then put to work teaching us Manu Tiria and Ka Haea Te Ata. What a wonderful way to learn these waiata hou – from a Ngāi Tahu kapa haka legend like Maani, backed up by the lovely Teone. Teone gave us an overview of Whai Rawa and all the benefits those of us who are not signed up yet, are missing out on. And Arapata answered any questions we had about whakapapa. We couldn’t have asked for much better and we are so grateful for this opportunity.

On the second day of our wānanga, we revisited our waiata with Maani, until we were ready to go on our hīkoi ki Ōtatara Scenic Reserve. Before our hīkoi up the historic Ōtatara maunga, Nigel Hadfield, one of the kaitiaki of the area, gave a brief mihi and kōrero about the history and stories of Ngāti Kahungunu invasion and the Ngāti Māmoe tīpuna who once lived here.

We proceeded up the maunga stopping along the way, so Nigel could show us old pā sites, kūmara pits and palisades, and relate the stories of these sites. With our kaumātua beside us, we only went half way up but they were really surprised at how far they climbed.

Our tamariki thoroughly enjoyed the run up and sliding down parts of the hillside. We spent an hour or so up the maunga and returned for lunch. It was here that we had to say goodbye to our guests, so we had our poroporoaki to thank Maani, Teone and Arapata for their awhi and tautoko of our taurahere. We hope to see them again soon. Thank you to our ringawera for the beautiful kai we had over the two days.

Kaumātua enjoying the hīkoi up the historic Ōtatara maunga.

Kaumātua enjoying the hīkoi up the historic Ōtatara maunga.