Monday, January 21, 2013

アオテアロア到着!We've arrived in Aotearoa!

English below!





We have just arrived in Aotearoa. At the entrance to the lobby of the Auckland International airport, we were welcomed by a "Marae" gate and a Maori song. Before we flew from Auckland to Wellington, we took a photo in front a huge Hobbit.

After arriving in Wellington and checking in at the hotel, we visited an office of Dr. Pita Sharples, co-leader of the Maori Party. We were given a formal welcome and a tea. We observed parliament and at night we had a dinner with many Maori people- those who have been supporting Aotearoa Ainumosir Exchange Program, those who have interacted with Ainu in the past, those who lived in Japan and those who are involved in AMO.

It was an unforgettable experience to be able to communicate with each and every one of the Maori people who greeted us and shared time with us. With our words, eyes, and the sharing of delicious food, we could share our hearts and minds with everyone. We are so overwhelmed by the hospitality of Maori people.

The program has just started and we are already so touched by the passion of so many people. What an inspiring beginning of our five-week stay!

We will wake up early and do our best tomorrow!

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