Ahh, life in the tropics, so many coconuts, so much time to knock 'em back. Actually, it hasn’t been that hot, lots of rain at night, warm but breezy during the day. So far, things are really good (only 2 weeks in, still early days I know). Here are, in a convenient dot point form, points of interest from life in Kokopo;
· - We have a garden with 11 coconut trees.
· - There are 3 dogs (quite skittish but very cute).
· - Geckos (some quite big) live in my kitchen.
· - I get to wear muu muu and people think it’s normal – and fashionable.
· - I can see a smouldering volcano from nearly anywhere in the town.
· - When babies see me they start crying – unless they were already crying, in which case the shock makes them forget what they were crying about.
· - I can get a really good bento from the market for about $1.20 Aus, which is wrapped and tied up in a banana leaf.
· - My colleagues don’t have to worry about losing pens, they stick spares in their afros (so many awesome afros).
· - My house is decorated with bible related paraphernalia and we have inherited many fine board games – if anyone comes to visit I promise to let you play Bible Marathon (Copperfield ladies – games night soon?).
· - Small children walking down the street call out to greet me; waving, smiling and occasionally carrying a machete.
· - There is a bar we went to in town, which locals and expats go to, but you can’t just rock up, it seems you have to ring up and put your name down. It’s free to get in and you get 2 free drinks per person. There’s pretty serious security on the outside, but inside, just a bunch of people looking very chill, drinking South Pacific Brew, looking out to the ocean and listening to a local band.
Yep, that’s the main stuff I think. Other news is that I’ve taken up some hobbies; yoga and the guitar. Both are reminding me of how old I am and how much harder things get. Have also made friends with some great Kiwis and Australians and the people I work with (all PNGns) are a truly fantastic group of people – am learning so much from them.
I’m also trying very hard to learn PNG pidgin, or Tok Pisin and our driver Robert is an awesome teacher. I think I’ll write about that next time, they’ve got some very nice words which I’d like to share with you all (or record for posterity if no one reads this J).