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Kia ora koutou,

Land­ing off a long-haul flight at 4.30am is never much fun, but even my grumps can be calmed by the ar­rivals cor­ri­dor at Auck­land air­port.

The one with the Ma¯ori voices and bird­song.

I’ve not come across any air­port abroad that of­fers this kind of wel­come, al­though there are plenty that have cul­tural ref­er­ences else­where.

Three weeks in Ire­land, Hol­land, Italy and Greece with my now grown-up daugh­ter were won­der­ful but also made me ap­pre­ci­ate Wai­heke afresh.

We were both ready to come home.

A big part of what makes New Zealand so spe­cial is its indige­nous Ma¯ori peo­ple, their his­tory and cul­ture.

It’s be­ing cel­e­brated this week and Stuff and Wai­heke Mar­ket­place are adding macrons to all Ma¯ori sto­ries, from now on, in recog­ni­tion of the im­por­tance of te reo Ma¯ori.

I’m plan­ning to start learn­ing the lan­guage - all help wel­comed. Ka kite ano¯. - Di.

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