Matariki is the Māori name for the Pleiades and the beginning of the new year – the stars become visible once again, close to dawn in the eastern sky.  I looked for the constellation this morning but there were too many clouds over the Ruahine Range to see them.

The winter solstice was today and tomorrow we will have a few more seconds of daylight – we are moving toward spring.  That’s the good news.

The bad news is that the worst of the winter weather is during July and August and there always seems to be a southerly storm bringing snow in the south just after lambing.  So while you sit there enjoying your cold drink in the summer sunshine, there are those of us who are deep in the depths of winter without the benefit of Christmas or New Year.  It’s no wonder that celebrating Matariki is becoming more popular.

I’m sure if I was an animal I’d be something that hibernates!

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