1081Hrs – Powerful Connections
I always knew that one of the things that Gleda could give me would be new friends from far flung places, people with a common interest and similar values to mine. What I didn’t expect was that I would start making these friends long before Gleda was even on the water. I have written many times of my surprise and gratitude for the many people who have made contact with me since I started the project, giving me words of advice and encouragement when I needed them most and helping me towards my goal when I felt the pressure of building alone. Although I have never met or spoken to most of these people nor indeed even written at length, the connections we have made are powerful non the less. This has been demonstrated by one person in particular. A few short weeks ago when I was facing so much uncertainty about my future and the project looked to be in danger, I was touched by the many who sent words of encouragement however, this individual went further than words and promised to send me a gift that they felt would bring me luck. That gift arrived yesterday and words cannot express my gratitude. It is a ‘Hei Matau’ pendant carved in bone using traditional methods by a Maori artist in New Zealand called Stanley Nathan. A ‘Hei Matau’ is a very stylised fish hook bone carving that symbolises prosperity,abundance, fertility and strength. They are also seen
as good luck charms, particularly for those travelling over water. They would most certainly have been worn by the navigators of the original Polynesian Vessels. This gift has now become one of my most treasured possessions and by wearing it I feel another powerful connection, a connection to the sea, to the traditions of the past, and to the people whose spirit is guiding me towards my dream.