Ant Vavia: This is Happening

I never would have thought that I’d be travelling overseas - for our seas. I mean, it’s one thing to study the science behind our ocean, but to learn about our relationship with it? That’s a whole other ball game between nations and here I am, playing a part of that ball game at the UN Ocean Conference in New York!

But hold on, let’s take a few steps back here.
Who am I?
I’m your friendly neighbourhood Spiderm—no wait, wait. I feel like that line’s been used before, but it feels like a good place to start, so here goes:
I’m your friendly neighbourhood South Auckland, homegrown Ngati Coconati, Future Hero Marine Biologist.

If I told you that I’ve always had an active love and fascination for the ocean, I’d be lying. If you hadn’t noticed the keyword “active”, well then look again – Done? Cool. I say “active” because I’ve always had an unspoken and passive respect for the ocean. But then there was a time where my mind just clicked then BAM I started to pay attention to what the ocean was… is… and may be. I’ve often wondered what stories the ocean would tell us if it could speak. Take a moment and imagine that.
 – “Oh yeah Ant, back in the day, some odd hundred years ago, I hosted a massive party full of fish and life! Yeah man it was lit! Good ol’ times. Haven’t been able to do that for a while.”

Random example, but relevant. Discussing about the use of the ocean can be quite a fishy topic (see what I did there?!), but it’s necessary. In New Zealand and the rest of the Pacific, the ocean plays a big part for our culture, and it would be cool if we played our part for the ocean too. So here’s to the conference with plans to learn a lot and add new material to my toolbox.

For me, this is a time for reflection. I think it’s pretty cool that I have this opportunity so I do have an internal expression of gratitude. The sweet thing about reflection is that you can do it anywhere.
Whether you’re lying in bed, or going for a walk.
Whether you’re chilling in NZ, or rolling in New York.
This is happening.


All posts by Institute delegates reflect their own thoughts, opinions and experiences, and do not reflect those of the Institute.

Posted on May 28, 2017 and filed under UN Ocean Conference 2017.