In 2019, like most years, defining how Grey has done is easy. Grey always does well in everything, it’s just natural talent. Because of this I wanted to describe more about what Grey has meant to me not only this year but each since Year 9. As we draw closer to the end of the year, I begin to realise that my life has revolved around the Whanau more than I had ever imagined, with all my classwork being turned in close to the deadline because “I have to sort Whanau stuff, Sir”, however, this has all paid off because we have had another great year with plenty of achievements to be proud of. We have had one of the best groups of students in Grey compared to previous years, with one of the highest participation rates we’ve seen. We’ve also had a strong group of prefects, Year 13’s, future leaders and whanau teachers enabling us to keep strong even without our star athlete, who I shouldn’t name. With all these factors combined, we had a recipe for success, whether or not we got that is a completely different story, but we still tried. Anyway, let’s break our year down a little bit further.
As the reigning champs, 2 years running, we started off the year strong with a win in the first event, Swimming Sports and a second place in Athletics. These events are all about what I like to call “Mass Participation”, (a quote which no-one knows I stole from the previous Captain Ben Griffin). Grey, being one of the more “committed” whanau, had great turnouts and therefore earned lots of points overall. From here, we began to go downhill as we entered the events which required actual people who are good at things (something which people in Bledisloe will never know) Ed. Ouch!. Touch and basketball were next with 2x 4th placings. At this point I began to get worried (never showed it though) as Marsden overtook first place. With an ever-growing distance between Marsden (1st) and Grey (2nd), we entered Cross Country, again I’ll use that word, “Mass Participation”. We claimed a victory, however it wasn’t enough to make me feel comfortable yet; we were still lagging by 5 points behind Marsden overall. On Thursday 30th May, my hopes were redeemed when everyone’s favourite day occurred… Work Day. This year it was a whanau competition and I will forever be grateful to Mr Smith for allowing this, as we gained another first and pushed ourselves to 1 point behind Marsden. Although he’ll never admit it, I’m fairly sure Marsden Whanau Captain, Lochie, began to worry at this point. After this, we have the events like speeches, and the quiz, in which Grey always does well, but thrown in-between was volleyball and badminton, so for a couple months around the middle of the year, we bounced around being close to Marsden and then not again. When September finally rolls around, the whanau captains get the usual email from Mr Smith telling us about Inter-Whanau football, however, this time it has a list of the competition so far this year, and tallied up points. At this point we all begin to get worried, as we only have 4 events left. With this in mind, Grey goes into football and claims a solid win with Marsden coming in 3rd. Now we get to today, we are 3 points behind the leading whanau and have 3 events left to redeem ourselves, 1 of which is the infamous haka.
So, finally, I want to describe what Grey means to me and sum up my year as the best whanau’s captain. You may have noticed that during the entire paragraph before I only ever mentioned Marsden and Bledisloe. This is because Marsden always have and always will be our biggest/only competition as we fight for the top spot. And I mentioned Bledisloe because being name dropped in this speech is the only gift I could ever give them. Ed. Double Ouch! Hobson and Carruth have never been competition, and are generally just the Whanau that turn up, compete and leave, (however hard Caleb tries to make Carruth relevant).
Grey has meant a lot to me over the years with both my brothers being placed here too, and one of them being the whanau captain who began the winning streak. I had to try my best to not come last. So with the help of all the boys, we put in 110% and ran a successful whanau (and on Athletics day, ran Bledisloe as well). I couldn’t have gotten to this point without the support of all the boys, teachers and prefects in Grey, and the support of my fellow Whanau Captains who helped me by reminding me when we had meetings with Mrs Gilbert-Smith. To finish this write-up I want to say, regardless of what whanau you’re in or how competitive you are, you should always side with the whanau that brings the most drinks to swimming sports, and pray for Bledisloe to beat Carruth.
Good Luck, and enjoy your time in Grey, and if you see Mr Nogher tell him about how great this text was so when I submit it in my writing portfolio, I get an Excellence.
Grey Whanau Captain