Monday 14 March 2011

Get me outta Dodge.

Where I'm living is quite nice. Actually, it's awesome. I'm 30mtrs above sea level, and given that Lae was under tsunami warning over the weekend, that's a good thing.

However, even I can have too much of a good thing, and after 3 weeks of compound living, AND living in Lae (which is PNG's 2nd largest city, yet only about the size of an average suburb  in Melbourne) I just had to get outta Dodge. Particularly, as behind the compound,they're building a new ramp for the hospital, and the generator goes SEVEN days a week, from 8 to 5.

So this weekend, I was offered the opportunity to take a drive to Bulolo.  Here in PNG, distance in kilometers is pretty much irrelevant. Bulolo, despite being only about 100kms away, is a good 2-3 hour drive. The drive includes some of the most beautiful scenery I have ever witnessed, and some of the roughest roads known to man.

Road doesn't look too bad, does it?That's because this is a photo of the approx 3kms in the whole journey without a pot hole.

This is what 99% of the journey is like. In fact,here in PNG, THIS bit qualifies as a good stretch.

There's a river crossing or two.

The landscape changes from pure PNG  jungle, to rolling hills so green they would rival Ireland, past remote villages where naked pikaninnis line the road, holding up the clearly universal "peace" sign.

Sunday isn't a bad day to go driving in Lae. It's a well-known fact that the raskols adhere to "Church on Sunday, Murder on Monday" so the roads were lined with people in their Sunday best, and while we took every precaution, we were met with only smiles and friendly waves.

Any picture I take just cannot convey the sheer size of this place. The hills (because we're still only in the coastal lowlands.. and nowhere near the Highlands) are impossibly huge. And impossibly steep.

With all respect to everyone who fought in any war, it's a common saying up here: "Who thought it would be a good idea to walk across Papua New Guinea and then pick a fight?"

My mari asked me about my weekend this morning. I told her "I drove to Bulolo, bought a packet of Twisties and drove back"

She thinks I'm aptly named  crazy dim-dim mari got im buai in gras bilong het.

Even Bubbles, the Vicious Killer Attack Ninja Puppeh is know as crazy lady guard dog mari!

And this is how a Vicious Killer Attack Ninja Puppeh guards her mistress on the long drive home.


Next week, I'm going to try to get even further, and drive up to visit friends in Wau. 


Anonymous said...

The Vicious Killer Attack Ninja Puppeh looks like a seriously Vicious Killer Attack Ninja Puppeh, indeed.

- jazz