Feb. 23, 2024 Live from the road

Mount Bruce - Ashhurst

Reported by Daniel Rubin, Roxana Magdici 58.0 km

Jo farewells the Peace Run Team which she wholeheartedly supports by giving them free accommodation.

We were super happy to be able to stretch out and relax our tired feet at the Discovery Motor Lodge for the third time in recent years!

Emily welcomes us at the beautiful and astonishing Pukaha National Wildlife Centre.

Pukaha National Wildlife Centre becomes a Sri Chinmoy Peace Blossom. Since 1986, many significant landmarks around the globe – from natural wonders to entire nations – have been dedicated to peace as part of this remarkable programme. This plaque is in a prominent place which all visitors can see near the front entrance.

Jade, a  tour guide here, reads the plaque's inscription.

We make a moment of peace all together. The Peace-Blossoms family offers an opportunity for different communities to share in mankind's common quest for peace.

Melanie is in charge of marketing - she takes a moment to hold the peace torch and smile to the world at large.

With a certificate of appreciation we offer our deepest admiration and appreciation to Pukaha Wildlife National Centre for all its daily hard work to preserve such a beautiful space and its contribution to the planet at large. It provides a doorway for many people, especially young people, to understand and feel the special-ness of preserving our unique native birds and animals, from the iconic Kiwi bird to the remarkable Tuatara lizard.

Smile for Nature, smile for Peace!

Jade walks the Peace Run team into the wonders of Pukaha National Wildlife Centre.

Pukaha Wildlife National Centre receives a painting by Sri Chinmoy entitled "Tolerance" and a book "Listen to Nature", Here is an excerpt:

"Nature has its own rhythm, its own harmony, its own peace and joy."

From left to right the Pukaha staff are Toby, Jade, Emily and Matt.

Our visit makes us aware of the precious work of Pukaha National Wildlife Centre: it strives to re-establish bird species that are endangered or near extinction! We shall all remember that our planet is for all creatures and be all the time aware of our actions' impact, no matter how small.

In the forest we met different happy birds.

We feel a special silence and peace around this 600 year old tree. Feeling its majesty and humility it helps us ground and feel more peace and gratitude.

Many kinds of small creatures and insects live on this tree!

What a great welcome the Eketahuna School gives us! This mosaic of words recollects a poem of Sri Chinmoy:   O dreamers of peace, come. Let us walk together. O lovers of peace, come, Let us run together. O servers of peace, come. Let us grow together.

Wonderful peace artwork by the school children.

Eketahuna School is one of the most enthusiastic schools, which made the Peace Run project be part of their curriculum! Children from each class would dedicate one day to writing peace poems and collect them in a booklet which the Peace Run truly treasures and will bring as inspiration to the next schools it meets.

The students peace poems are so beautiful, creative and full of meaning. We are so touched by hearing a few of them read out loud, like this one by Jehanne Knight and Cleo Davis:

Fire touching water

Darkness meeting light

An old face looking into a young

Differences put aside for a night.

The teachers get ready for a peace torch relay!

Eketahuna School welcomes a Magnolia peace tree sapling in the schoolyard.

Reading out the tree plaque peace poem, written by Sri Chinmoy:

"The sweet whispers of Mother Nature  Awaken and enlighten me"

A staff member will help the students take good care of the peace tree.

Now the children can run with the peace torch! So much fun and joy everywhere!

Bye Bye Eketahuna School! We had a wonderful time and will carry you in our hearts as we run across the globe!

Have a look at the beautiful peace poems written by Eketahuna School children.

The Peace Run team runs towards the next destination: horse riding and a run through the Manawatu Gorge with local runners.

The children on the Eketahuna school bus are happy to see the runners on the road! Here's Mark, the van driver stretching out for a run. with the torch. A good runner in his day, he is aspiring to get into shape to join the Peace Run across America.

Enjoying the vastness.

No matter what you do, smile.

The Peace Run arrives at Timeless Horse Treks where Troy, the white horse, welcomes the Peace torch without the flame on, so that he doesn't get scared.

Andrea(Bosnia). Harashita(Japan) and Roxana(Romania/Italy) share a moment with Troy, a wonderful finish to their New Zealand journey with the torch. They will take all your smiles and good wishes back to their respective countries and communities.

Cameron Horne of Timeless Horse Treks is delighted to receive the peace torch and offers a free ride to the Peace Run team.

The three peace runners are ready to horse ride for their first time.

Wonderful landscapes.

The horses play in the water.

Thank you everyone for your precious contribution to this special Peace Run in New Zealand!

Vonette hosted the girls' team for the night, offering them a delicious dinner and filling breakfast. The Peace Run thanks her with the paintings "Happiness" and "Love the children". Vonette is a committed Peace Ambassador, so we feel she can really treasure this copy of the Peace poems written by Eketahuna school children and a copy of poems collection by its incredibly creative students.

Local trail runners Sue and Abi lead the guys through the very last run of this Peace Run, through the Manawatu Gorge. We thanked them for guiding us with a certificate of appreciation and a book, "Listen to Nature".

We started near Ballance and finished near Ashhurst.

The Peace Run ends with a visit to the Peace Tree in Taupo, by the entrance of the Waipahihi Botanical Garden.

What a wonderful 7 years old rimu tree! The Botanical Garden is really taking care of it as well as everyone passing by and taking a moment to offer love and peace. Nirakara smiles.

The peace torch travels to Huka Falls!

Michael from Vienna is very inspired by holding the peace torch.

"A heart of divine love Will always go far beyond Earth-bound limits", Sri Chinmoy.

The quote on the back of veteran 3100 Mile runner, Ananda-Lahari Zuscin of Slovakia. The race held annually in New York is the longest certified footrace in the world, which he has entered 19 times! This remarkable gentleman cleaned the vehicles daily over the last 2 weeks of the New Zealand leg of the Peace Run. He delighted us with his humour, irrepressible enthusiasm and calm nature. To his left is a Balkan representitive, Caslav, who enjoyed his time with the school-children of Aotearoa - he never stopped smiling !

Torch carried by
Ananda-Lahari Zuscin (Slovakia), Andrea Todic (Bosnia and Herzegovina), Caslav Mitrovic (Bosnia and Herzegovina), Daniel Rubin (New Zealand), Harashita Sunaoshi (Japan), Mark Harvey (New Zealand), Nirakara Lincoln (New Zealand), Roxana Magdici (Romania).  
Accompanied by  
Sue Pegrume, Abi Wighman
Caslav Mitrovic, Mark Harvey, Roxana Magdici
The torch has travelled 58.0 km from Mount Bruce to Ashhurst.

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