The pōhiri at Gisborne, at Tūranga, began with the longest walk I've ever seen: from close to a kilometre away the manuhiri were called on, advancing under a wero so ferocious, the warriors right up in their faces, close enough to spit, close enough to strike with a mere.

Behind them, ranks of other warriors withdrew, circled round, advanced again. And on the visitors came, the crews of three magnificent twin-hulled sea-going waka hourua, all there to pay homage, and the Governor-General, the Prime Minister and her ministers, the President of French Polynesia, the British High Commissioner, hundreds with them,

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