Independence – Saturday

Today, we went out to Jack Pidik Park where we met up with Derrick, Jamin and family, and a whole bunch of very happy Papua New Guineans.  We wandered around for a while by ourselves until the boys turned up.  And were the centre of attention for a few camera’s as we were the only expats there at the time.  We even had a couple of local coppers come up and shake our hands.  If you are reading this – and saw us today, and said HI – thank you 🙂

We then caught up with our US mate Matt and his son Ty outside the Bisini Softball grounds hoping to see one of my team dancing in an East New Britain sing sing.  However the line was HUGE, the temp was hitting 34 and there were some boys getting a bit niggly in the queue, so we decided to head down to Ela Beach.  Unfortunately, the events at Ela Beach finished just as we arrived, so we headed out onto the beach for the kids to find starfish and play with some local kids.  Also instantaneously, a game of touch footy started up, and of course – I was there with my ever present Sony NEX-5N camera to try and get some nice shots.

We had an awesome day, topped off with Derrick coming home for a few beers, then I took him back to see his father in hospital in time for 5pm visiting hours.  Sadly, at 8pm Derrick rung me with the news his father had passed away.  So whilst you are reading this, and looking through the photo’s – I dedicate this series of photos to a visionary leader, from the mighty Sepik river who has raised a fantastic young man (as well as his other family).  Please spare a thought for those that have lost loved ones over the course of this 37th Independence Celebrations.


PNG Independence Day Celebrations – Ela Murray

Yesterday the older children took part in a singsing at school – Xaria did her’s at the liklik school on Wednesday. So I turned up with camera in hand to take photo’s. At the moment I am collating them – I took a few hundred, so I will do a gallery posting later tonight once I have everything organised. It was an amazing day – and the kids were bloody awesome. I was very proud of them all…

The day started with the PNG national anthem, then the pledge, then a parade of each region complete with flagbearer whom was dressed in traditional dress. Then the classes came out and danced. awesome – did I say that, – I’ll say it again.. AWESOME!

I then went back to work, where I was asked to dress up for our work celebrations. After checking out one of my collegues face paint and dress, I was told by one of his staff “that he was going to win”.. Of course, I replied “is he getting his kit off?”. Lol. So headed upstairs and had a choice of wearing a headdress from Momase, or representing Manus in full traditional dress (but no penis gourd). So of course, I took my kit off. Not only was I the only expat in full dress, I was also the only male – so all our staff had a great time taking my photo and cheering me on. As a prize for effort, the team gave me two bilum, very chuffed with my bilum :). And then later on, one of the guys from another team Herman, gave me a beautiful string basket/bag… I was honestly stunned.

A great day had by all and yes – here’s some photos (including one of me at work) 🙂