I'm off to Mohua (Golden Bay) this weekend. A full moon party on the beach, sun soaked golden sand, untrampled native bush, beautiful people...
This area is a hidden gem, nestled towards the northwest of the top of Te Wai Pounamu (south island). A mixture of alternatives and farmers... with many artists and creative types.
Mohua is snug between two National Parks, Kahurangi and Able Tasman. You don't go anywhere when you get there because the road doesn't loop, it just stops. Puponga is at the base of Onetahua (Farewell Spit) and Maungarakau is on the westcoast just after the Westhaven inlet.
There are so many pleasures in being in the bay. Waikoropupu Springs, the 2nd clearest water in the world, and on every headland an old pa site. Tales of taniwha abound each inlet.
Situated between the islands with vast moana kai, this area is one where maori settled early.
When you are in Mohua the rest of the world fades away and it might exist or it might not. I liken it to brigadoon.
Individuals are cherished in the bay. Kindness is freely given and community spirit is high. Lots of greenies and environmentalists and lots of international travellers who go to many places, arrive here, and settle. It is unusual to speak only one language in the bay.
About 5500 people live there and you can walk up a river alone or find a quiet spot on the beach to swim naturally. It's the sort of place where men hug each other in friendship without fear.
It is part of this country, and it isn't.
It's the future and the past and the future.
To celebrate i am posting a poem i wrote a few years ago
the sky is swept over me,
clouds tear into thin and
blue abounds everywhere
As they walk sand collides
beneath them, the sea
thirsty for breath, rises and
their traces are inundated,
wiped clean to start over.
The touch of another body,
so we slide, hands fluttering
over heat, desperately drawn
we rise, heads above water
and laugh, cry and try as we might.
A slow in-step-walk across
sand, they swirl energy, a roll
along the beach, they touch.
A light-linger, then turn
synchronized and leaning inward.