by Margaret Delbridge

Waikanae stream crossing

Te Pehi Kupa

I’m a street-walker; no, not that sort!  I enjoy recreational walking around the streets of Waikanae.

The ‘hill’ is my turf as I just love the views. I also like looking at what the many different gardens contain and gain inspiration from seeing what others are growing.

But I digress…

Discovering Waikanae along Pehi Kupa Street where I was intrigued by what I’ve named ‘Bridge to Nowhere’. It crosses the stream between Pehi Kupa Street and the railway. Presumably it carries cables or pipes although I could see no evidence of that.

Pehi Kupa is one of the many Waikanae street names commemorating great Maori leaders — I have been trying to find out a bit about Pehi Kupa, but have only read this brief piece by Andrew Cusack, A Maori in Buenos Aires, so far:

He says, “So far as I can tell, the first Maori to visit Argentina (or the United Provinces of the River Plate as it was then called) was the young nobleman Te Pehi Kupe in October 1824. (The name is spelt varyingly as Te Pēhi Kupe, Tupai Cupa, Te Pai Kupa, and Tippahée Cupa). Te Pehi was born on the North Island, probably around 1795, and was a senior-line descendant of Toarangatira (founder of the Ngati Toa tribe) as well as an uncle to the more famous Ngati Toa chief, Te Rauparaha…

“He was also presented to King George IV, learning to ride, visiting factories, and surviving a measles epidemic before leaving England aboard the Thames on 6 October 1825 to return to New Zealand.”

Originally posted on the DW Facebook page