“Water, water everywhere…,” and that is exactly how we woke, to beautiful cloud formations resting over the Pacific Ocean. We were sailing northeast along the coast of the North Island of New Zealand.

Last week, the devastating effects of Cyclone Gabrielle left much of North Island dealing with its aftermath, including landslides, floods, shattered towns and cities, and destroyed infrastructure, including ports, bridges, and roads. Plans to visit Napier and Gisborne weren’t workable, so we traveled the coastal waters, en route to the Great Barrier Islands farther to the north.

This morning, we enjoyed a presentation by Jenny Kingsley entitled, “A Modern History of Polynesian Voyaging.” We learned of the efforts to revive the ancient navigational knowledge and technology that allowed Polynesians to discover all the islands of the South Pacific. Her presentation was followed by the documentary film, Whetu Marama: Bright Star, the story of Hek Busby (Hekenukumai Ngaiwi Puhipi) and his part in the revival of navigation in New Zealand as a boat builder and bridge builder across the Pacific.

We were treated to a delicious barbecue lunch featuring all the favorites before Taylor Simpkins presented her discussion, “Kelp Forests of New Zealand.” This is a passion of Taylor’s and also the subject of her PhD research.

Later in the afternoon, we were invited to the main lounge to explore our creativity with Jenny and Mary Everton by “mapping” our voyage onto an outline of New Zealand’s coast. Everyone had their own ideas about how to reflect their experiences during our voyage.

A photo feedback session with Lisa Hornak and Macduff Everton completed our afternoon activities. Earlier in the morning, Lisa and Macduff collected photos from those who wanted to share them for constructive feedback. The afternoon session offered considerable information on alternative ways to make the images “sing.”