Rainbow Warrior

“There will come a time when the earth is sick and the animals and plants begin to die. Then the Indians will regain their spirit and gather people of all nations, colors and beliefs to join together in the fight to save the Earth:
The Rainbow Warriors.”

– Ancient Native American prophecy

Rainbow Warrior is the name of a series of ships operated by Greenpeace. ”

This blog was created instead of an “About” page – and is meant to explain some of the reasons for us starting projects like the OpenCafe and ArtMarketOnline.One’s life changes according the experiences one goes through and the people one meets.

I have met amazing people and I also went through a lot of nonsense up till today – this is how I ended up in South Africa running our open source projects.

Recently I met Abri – who happened to arrive at the cafe right before our Software Freedom Day.

First he said – “This is a cool place” – and a few days later he came back saying “So what can I do to help?” and he never stopped helping since then. He has been unbelievably supportive in everything that we did, very very friendly with all the “OpenCafe people” – he has never met before – he has infinite knowledge of Linux related topics – I am telling you – you don’t easily come accross a guy like this. During the few days we spent together he taught us all about Greenpeace, energy saving bulbs, Free BSD, the freecycle project and many other great things I have never heard about.

Abri – thanks for all the support – here in the cafe one rarely feels like – “Now I can just sit and the cafe runs itself” – during our events – it did feel like that many times – it really felt like you were running the project as if it was your own.

Before the OpenCafe Abri worked on the Rainbow Warrior – a Greenpeace ship – the Rainbow Warrior is used as a support vessel for many Greenpeace protest activities against seal hunting, whaling, and nuclear weapons testing.

Here is how Abri talks about it in a Green peace blog entry:

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“The Warrior was docked at Incheon – a small town near Seoul, South Korea, where I have been living for the past five years. It was on a campaign against whaling.

One of my friends called me up and told me that he heard that there would be an ‘open day’ on the ship. I wasn’t feeling very academic that day, so I decided to skip Korean class, and go look at the ship instead.

The visit to the ship must have made a tremendous impression on me, because after the open day, I couldn’t stop thinking about it and all the amazing things that Greenpeace does. For the next week, I did my everyday things as usual, but the Rainbow Warrior was always in the back of my mind. I was corresponding with some of the crew via email, and it was through them that I heard that there would be another open day, this time in Busan.

The day before the ship was due to arrive I zipped south to Korea’s second largest city on their new bullet train system. I had the name of the place where the Warrior was to dock, a crummy tourist map, my compass and my GPS. I guesstimated the direction I should head, and stared hiking. After 5 hours of walking along some beautiful seaside trails, I found it – The Korean Maritime University! Having found my destination, I decided to head for a backpacker’s hostel and get some rest.

After getting up at 3:30 on a misty morning, I headed back to the university. It was just starting to get light when I arrived. After hanging around for a while, I saw a “Korea Friends of the Environment Movement” minibus drive by me. I started walking in the general direction it was driving. A few minutes later, they came back and asked me if I was with Greenpeace.

While I was helping them set up their inflatable welcome-boat, cameramen and reporters from the local news agencies started arriving.

Where before there was only hazy mist over the sea, the faded shape of the bow of the Rainbow Warrior gradually started to appear. It was truly beautiful, and I felt so excited! As it got closer I could see people, and it wasn’t long before I started recognising some faces! Gina, the volunteer from Fiji who gave me the first open day tour, was the first of the crew to recognize me!

So, then it started; I followed the ship around from port to port, as it travelled around Korea. Because I could speak some Korean and I know how things work there, I was soon helping the crew out with things like changing money, and finding obscure parts for the ship.

Next thing I knew I was standing on the deck of the Rainbow Warrior, watching the land that has been my home for half a decade slowly fade into the horizon.”

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