Saturday, May 30, 2009
One Morning on Takapau Plains
It was 9am on May 13th when I turned into Snee Road on the Takapau Plains in search of Rakautatahi Marae. I didn't have to go far. It was only a few hundred metres off the highway, tucked behind a big macrocarpa hedge and a thicket of harakeke (flax). Located around 6km east of Norsewood, it's home to several Ngati Kahungunu hapu - Ngati Kikirioterangi, Toroiwaho, Rangikahutia, Rangitothu, Ngai Tahu o Kahungunu and Rangitane. There wasn't a soul about when I arrived - just a farmer in a neighbouring field rounding up cows with a barking dog. The skies were dark and heavy, which added to the sense of brooding in the lichen-covered carvings.