An Australian volunteer who was doing whatever volunteers do in PNG.
I was there for 2 years until Dec 2005 .. I hope I made the most of it.

Monday, November 29, 2004

Shorthand Observation

Tomorrow I fly out of PNG and back to Australia for a holiday. I have been here just over 10 months now and am almost at the half way mark in my assignment. Seeing as this holiday will almost neatly sever the assignment in two I thought now would be a good time to put down some of my thoughts on this fascinating country.

When I arrived I didn't know what to expect (old cliché I know). I had read almost nothing about the place (apart from the Lonely Planet) and to be honest I really didn't want to read much or know much full stop. I wanted to find out first hand. Not to have someone else throw in their thoughts and observations. This is what I like to do before I go to any place. I want to see it, live it, breathe it and immerse in it. Does this sound trite?

Well anyway instead of going through and writing out a long-winded post (you can already read them in other posts) I thought it would be easier if I summarise my conclusions on what I think I have lived, breathed, soaked and seen.

So here goes, my impressions of PNG the land and people - condensed:

Comely landscape.
Smoke-hazed valleys.
Moss-hued mountains.
Clear-felled scars.
Azure ocean.
Silt-stained harbours.
Emerald growth.
Deity-topped peaks.
Creaking earth.
Dog-terrifying thunderstorms.
Chaotic transport.
Car-swallowing potholes.
Beirut buses.
Spider-web windscreens.
Razor-wire fences.
Washed-out bridges.
Twisting highways.
Pig crossings.
Rutted tracks.
Toyota testing.
Monster knives.
Omnipresent gardens.
Convivial gatherings.
Effusive speeches.
Passionate preaching.
Credulous faith.
Hidden diablerie.
Covered nakedness.
Naked sing-sings.
Vehement revenge.
Hospitable charity.
Fecund villagers.
Puckish pikinnis.
Improvident government.
Resourceful residents.
Kit-gloved ex-pats.
Bow-and-arrow guards.
M16 raskols.
Vagary adventures.
Unexpected expected.