A feeling that you belong somewhere makes a big difference to how you walk in the world. This sense of place can be varied but connects for me to the Māori concept of tūrangawaewae – the place where you stand, where your roots are, the place that empowers you.
I’ve lived in London and Wellington but my home, my tūrangawaewae, is Auckland. I miss Wellington, especially when I visit. I miss catching the cable car to work and the coffee at Astoria, where I was a regular. I miss the kind of people I met there, people who knew what it was like to be a new stranger in town and who took pains to welcome you in. But when I visit, I don’t feel that same connection that I do up here. Not to all of Auckland, but Central and West Auckland is where I grew up. It’s where I raise my children. The sight of Rangitoto across the water centres me. Looking at the cityscape coming into town via the Rosebank causeway makes me happy in a way that even the terrible traffic can’t quite diminish. The people and community in Grey Lynn feels familiar and safe. Continue reading “A Sense of Place and how it grounds us.”