The theme was "colour me crazy", which was harder than it sounded, given that my luggage was lost and I pretty much had on the clothes I'd left Melbourne in, THREE DAYS BEFORE!
I establish my position as the new village idiot with The Goode Wymen of Lae, by whipping out my camera and taking photos of food. Like the locals at the market, they are all a little weirded out by this.
Pretty much all the food in PNG is organic, primarily because pesticides et al are just too expensive. When you buy your fruit and veg at the markets, the produce is from the surrounding villages, each of which grows one, maybe two crops. Locals may have walked 3 hours down from their Highland village to sell their produce.
Possibly the sweetest, plumpest prawns I have ever eaten.
A side of smoked salmon is promptly demolished.
It sounds all very Mehm Sahib and pink gin, but it's not. Expat wives aren't allowed to work. It's a condition of their husband's visa. LOTM provides an excellent networking opportunity, and raises money for local charities and schools. Education isn't free in PNG. In a country where the average wage is about $1.10AUS per hour, educating a child can cost as much as $500. Rather than the clique of hot house flowers that I expected, I met a wonderful group of intelligent, sassy, independant women who are very involved in their local community. AND I possibly lined up a gig for some volunteer work with Médecins Sans Frontières as well.
Not bad for a morning's work.