A member of the Auckland Finnish Society, Hellevi Pärssinen-Walrond, stands outside her sauna with a vasta (silver birch branches lashed together). Dipped in water, the vasta is used to scrub the skin. Earlier arrivals in Kawerau had to make do with eucalyptus branches for their vasta. Sauna is one of the only Finnish words in common use – invariably Kiwis mispronounce it as ‘saw-na’. The correct pronunciation is ‘sow-na’.
Te whakamahi i tēnei tūemi
Private collection, Carl Walrond
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