Onwards towards Gopinis!

We are nearly at the 3/4 mark of our assignment – in a little over six months we are due to complete our Bougainville assignment and head off back to New Zealand! The time has flown and the weeks seem to continue to roll over at an alarming rate. This has been a relatively quiet week so I have dispensed with the usual separate report. One old fart had a birthday party on the 24th

and he was able to blow (spray?) out the candles between dribbles. We celebrated with a very pleasant potluck dinner on the Friday evening, but missed seeing the All Black trounce the French (pardon, Caroline!) on Saturday because the broadcast bill had still not been paid. (The good news is that it came back on on Monday morning at 8am, so we will see regular highlights as well as the Samoans just beat the Springboks on Saturday!)

Apart from that I have continued to enjoy helping out at Oxfam with the programme of hygiene training and water supply and toilet installation. Today Rosie accompanied us for the best part of a day on a field trip down the coast to inspect three villages that had been Oxfam pilot projects for the area, and where there appear to remain some challenges. At the end of a trip like this one feels a bit like how I would imagine it would feel being in a tumble drier for half an hour, with heat, humidity and being thrown around!

To finish off a picture of a beautiful lilly I spotted in a neighbour’s garden, plus a close-up of one of those hanging tropical blooms – in our garden.

plus a section of coconut tree stem photographed to-day

Cheers and – keep safe – until next week!


The Late Show ( edited!)

Well , here it is, revised and carefully scrutinised so as not to give offence  to anyone. Hopefully lesson learned! As usual click on the highlighted text for the link to the written report The Late Show

We hope you are all enjoying the World Cup Rugby. We watched the first few games  but the screen has been blank for more than a week now. I rang up the TV station and enquired why no picture and was told that, despite sending 10  invoices, the ABG hadn’t paid its bill – so no world cup! They also thought that the ABG had found some money  to pay so there is hope! meanwhile we are having to rely on radio news for the scores and whatever we can download from the internet for pictures. GRRR!!

Not sure what it is but it is quite a stunning flower - Bromilead?


Steady as she goes

Greetings – not much of general interest to “wax lyrically” about so I’ll keep this brief. I have started as acting person in charge of the Oxfam Arawa branch and we farewelled Pauline, the outgoing (that refers to her waistline as well) team leader  at a couple of functions. She is heading back to more civilised territory for her confinement and will probably not return to Arawa with a young child. So it’s back to a management role with some engineering thrown in  – a challenge that I am looking forward to! And there is still a bit of Arawa Urban Council work to do from time to time to add to the challenge. Should the hoped for millions appear for the AUC, then things are gong to get REALLY interesting. but somehow I don’t think that will happen… I have finally managed to get some money out of PNG for them- to China to pay for some fire hydrants – and to Australia for some tests of a coating for Asbestos content. Current challenge is to get someone in Rabaul interested enough to act as customs agent and to arrange on- shipping to Kieta down the road!

Other than that life is pretty routine for both Rosemary (particularly so) and me – Arawa is surprisingly peaceful and laid-back – add a bit of “Jungle Juice” for a good few young men and that “laid back” becomes “flat horizontal”!

A highlight of the week was staying up late with the other VSA volunteers and NZ police to watch a delayed broadcast of the All Blacks beating the TONGANS. Last time we tried that, you may recall, we got an Aussie chat show instead of the advertised rugby so we were relieved when the rugby did come on. The Tongans  put up a very good fight, especially when you consider the population base they have to select their squad from. The reportedly spectacular opening ceremony did not feature on local television. So we will be missing most of the excitement in NZ with the staging of the Rugby World cup under-way – not sure if that is necessarily a minus! We have at least one friend who was threatening to head off for Canada to avoid the “thugby”. Nevertheless we hope it all goes well from here on, notwithstanding the transport troubles that caused some problems last weekend. So far my predictions for the winners in the PNG VSA rugby sweepstake are on target !

Pretty pinki floweri (latin name)

The NZ version of this  is a small bright green with about 10mm wingspan and is  a bit of a nuisance in the garden. Here in Bougainville its a similar size but a lot more colourful

Dog Tucker!

Greetings again loyal readers! This weeks posting is about dogs, the OxfamWASH programme, and some new faces on the block.As usual click on the highlighted text to follow through to the written report.Dog tucker

The flower below is another unusual hibiscus photographed on my travels through the villages. This is a “double decker” bloom with two separated layers of petals

Take care and Go the All Blacks in the rapidly approaching World Cup! ( Hope the Springboks do OK too :>))