Thursday, April 28, 2011

Sweet pawpaw

The pawpaws in the coastal parts of PNG are wonderful. They are really sweet and juicy and vary in size, from small to HUGE! When I visited Australia at Christmas and saw the pawpaws for sale at the shops, I was shocked at how small they are – even the smallest ones here are bigger than most of the pawpaws I saw in Australia!

The pawpaw that I’m showing you in this picture is not what we would call a really big one, it’s probably about medium size. It looks a bit green on the outside, but there is some yellow on the skin which indicates that it is fully ripe and ready to eat.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Watching DVDs in the village

I got a portable DVD player for Christmas, so that when I’m in the village, I can watch DVDs that my parents send me. I just need to charge it with electricity when I’m in Buka and its battery will last for about four hours in the village. Sometimes we get a group of people from the village who come and watch it with us – not too big a crowd as the screen is pretty small.

This is our little DVD viewing set-up. We have to rearrange the furniture a little so that we can all see. There’s not many people yet as we haven’t started the DVD.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Scenes from my flight to Buka

I’m back in Buka now and off to the village tomorrow for two weeks. We flew from Lae to Buka on Monday, via Rabaul. I was at the window seat on the flight from Lae to Rabaul, so here are some photos that I took.

Lae


Islands and reefs




Thank you Air Niugini!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Basket weaving

Coconut trees are amazing – almost every part of a coconut tree can be used for human purposes!

The leaves are especially useful for weaving baskets of various types – some are used for carrying food and others are used for baking food.

On the day of the celebration feast (see earlier blog post), I learnt how to make the kind of basket that is used for baking some traditional food. Here are some pictures.

Working on the basket under the watchful eye of my sister:


Getting some help from my sister:


The finished product!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Party time! Village feast

In January, we arrived in the village to a hive of activity – the village was preparing for a feast that weekend. The occasion for the feast was that when one of our Uncles was driving to Arawa, he crossed a river which was high and it rolled his car. This was a situation in which he could have died, or been seriously injured, but he was fine, so this feast was celebrating the fact that our uncle had a dangerous experience and lived – definitely something to be thankful for.

Part of this celebration tradition involved washing certain people’s faces and feet with a combination of special water and leaves as shown in the picture below.


Lots of people came to our village for our feast and they all brought baskets of food for the feast. They also go back home with a basket of food too. Inside the kitchen house was very busy and full up with baskets of food.


The men constructed two special long tables for the feast food to be set out on. They were working on the tables during the week before the feast.


Some food was set out in the open on the tables, which invited the flies along, so several ladies and girls were shooing them away with various bits of trees. I managed to get in on the action too!


There was also some dancing and lots of hoots of laughter whenever someone new got up to dance. One lady got me up to dance, with reluctance on my part, though I think I got the loudest cheer of the day when I went up!

It was a really fun day and I think everyone enjoyed themselves, I certainly did. In the morning I went around from place to place in the village, seeing what everyone was doing and chatted to people. I got involved where I could – I helped with food preparation, sorting out the baskets in the kitchen and I also made a basket to be used to cook something.