Blind Foundation Gisborne Maori enjoy sounds of sea

A seagoing adventure on the Takitimu was 18 months in planning and preparation for 20 Blind Foundation Gisborne Maori group members but they had the time of their lives, said volunteer Kath Allen. Seated at the stern are (left) Sam Ribbons, Walter Mathieson, Peter Roberts and Kahu Grube. Tess Hennessey (standing) holds onto a post, and seated are coordinator Nola Burgess, Takitimu volunteer Harold Brown, Blind Foundation volunteers Kath Allen and Edie Curtis and skipper Bruce Cordiner. Picture by Liam Clayton

SHORT of taking a dip in the sea, sailing on it was the best place to be in Monday's heat, which is what 20 members of Blind Foundation Gisborne Maori group did.

Because of health and safety requirements the ocean-going adventure on historic harbour boat Takitimu took 18 months to plan but it was worth it, said volunteer Kath Allen.

“It was absolutely wonderful. The day couldn’t have been more perfect. It was lovely out on the water.”

A wide range of ages were represented on the Poverty Bay voyage and the younger members couldn’t believe it, Mrs Allen said.

“They kept giving us hugs all afternoon. They didn’t believe such a trip was possible.”

Older members of the crew loved the trip as well.

“They held on for their lives until they realised they didn’t have to hold on to anything but just feel the ride and the sun and listen to water lapping against the boat and the gulls.”

When the group sang an island song one of the women, who had never been on a boat before, stood up and performed a hula dance, Mrs Allen said.

Next time they take a group on the Takitimu, Mrs Allen and the group’s coordinator Nola Burgess plan to take a commentator who can talk about the depth of the water, describe the buoys and their function, and other features of the experience.

“We take so much for granted.”

SHORT of taking a dip in the sea, sailing on it was the best place to be in Monday's heat, which is what 20 members of Blind Foundation Gisborne Maori group did.

Because of health and safety requirements the ocean-going adventure on historic harbour boat Takitimu took 18 months to plan but it was worth it, said volunteer Kath Allen.

“It was absolutely wonderful. The day couldn’t have been more perfect. It was lovely out on the water.”

A wide range of ages were represented on the Poverty Bay voyage and the younger members couldn’t believe it, Mrs Allen said.

“They kept giving us hugs all afternoon. They didn’t believe such a trip was possible.”

Older members of the crew loved the trip as well.

“They held on for their lives until they realised they didn’t have to hold on to anything but just feel the ride and the sun and listen to water lapping against the boat and the gulls.”

When the group sang an island song one of the women, who had never been on a boat before, stood up and performed a hula dance, Mrs Allen said.

Next time they take a group on the Takitimu, Mrs Allen and the group’s coordinator Nola Burgess plan to take a commentator who can talk about the depth of the water, describe the buoys and their function, and other features of the experience.

“We take so much for granted.”

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