Open boat talks (C) GREENPEACE / Sharomov
I take it all back! Gisborne is a meteorological chocolate box. I woke at 4:30am to pouring rain, an open cabin hatch and a developing puddle on the floor. And the rain pretty much didn't stop.
Over breakfast we all cursed the weather gods and crossed our fingers that the Gisborne community would still brave our open day.
Luckily a team of volunteers had come down from Auckland to help set up for it. In howling wind we erected tarpaulins and ploughed on. Also, it was unseasonably cold. Hats off to our open boat coordinator Sheena, who was a picture of determination throughout (even when the awnings almost blew off into the Harbour). But the people came!
Gisborne Kids on the Rainbow Warrior (C) GREENPEACE / Sharomov
We actually ended up having more people attend than during the Auckland open-boats. And the best bit was that most visitors were local kids. Such a brilliant audience! Often it was hard to get a word in edge wise because of the quick-fire questions. The best of the day, but perhaps most misguided one was: "so, where do you drag the whales up on to the deck?"
Susannah also told me how she was speaking very simply and slowly to a group of 10 year-olds about climate change... as in, "the planet is getting warmer, like when you put your toast in the toaster and it heats up", thinking she was speaking at just the right level, when a very earnest young boy put his hand up and asked, "but what about the Kyoto Protocol?" Seems kids these days are right up with the play on this one. In other questions, I was a bit taken aback when asked: "how long do you sleep for?" But, given my famously early bedtimes, I was very happy to answer.
Impromptu Gisborne kapa haka (C) GREENPEACE / Sharomov
Sometime during the afternoon, with no warning, one local school began a kapa haka performance on the main deck. It was extraordinary. "That's an East Coast welcome," a woman whispered in my ear.
The first round of pumpkin fare has begun. Pumpkin pie for dessert. Delicious.
All in all a great stop in Gisborne.