‘This isn’t us? Oh but it is.’ New Zealand grapples with its history
A journalist reflects on the legacy exposed by the tragedy that took the world by surprise.
Auckland, New ZealandIt had been a day of high hopes. Around the country, thousands of school students had congregated at open-air rallies to protest the climate inaction of their elders and demand change. Some had been told by their school principals that they would be marked truant if they attended the protests. They attended anyway. Then the incomprehensible happened, and the light of their hopes was consumed by darkness.
I knew nothing of it. I was at sea, counting off the 12,000 paddle strokes that would take me from an island back to the mainland, the city of Auckland, my home. My world at that moment was sailboats, seabirds, and the glittering gulf.
“Last, loneliest, loveliest, exquisite, apart,” wrote a