Friday, July 1, 2011

Me Down There With the Starvin Pigmies in New Guinea, Amen

Here I am, living my dream of traveling Papua New Guinea. Waiting for the flight from Manila, we were offered a buffet in the lounge for around $15, which included drinks. We got our money’s worth out of that. After drinking enough to kill a small animal, we boarded the plane with a couple smuggled beers and started our journey to PNG. Getting drunk was a good idea in the end, I slept the entire flight until the plane hit the runway at 5am.

We chilled out at the Port Moresby airport, sleeping on the benches until our flight at 3pm. By then we were hella-sick of waiting around airports, eager to get out and start experiencing PNG. We jumped back on another plane bound for the island of New Britain, landing just in time to see a nice sunset over the runway. We arrived at the airport just outside of Kokopo, the provincial capital, having no idea how to get anywhere on the island. I asked a local security guard, and before you knew it we were on a bus full of them, heading for Kokopo with a promise to be dropped off at a cheap guest house. They turned out to be a great bunch of guys, and took us to a guest house where we managed to get a good deal on a room.

At first sight the locals here look intimidating. It’s quite the change from the rest of Asia, where I’m as big or bigger than most people. These people are much bigger, some of the men looking a lot like Kimbo Slice. Some of the people can also have hard looks, expressions that make you think they’re not to be messed with. But that’s where it ends, everywhere we walked around today we were greeted with smiles and hellos, and most people were incredibly friendly and talkative with us. Just walking around today we were given some local strong drink (at 9am), hung out with some local fisherman on the pier, and were given a lot of info on the surrounding area. Saying all this though, I must add that there apparently are some bad people around here, a group of men we talked to stressed (about six times) that we not walk around the streets after dark. And when they used the word ‘psychopaths’ to describe why we shouldn’t walk around at night, we decided we will definitely heed their advice.

Anyways, this place seems a lot safer than I’ve read in books and on the internet. And it’s beautiful here. Our guest house is right on the beach with a view of Tarvurvur, an active volcano across the bay that still belches steam and ash. I’m excited to see the sun set tonight, it looks like it’s lined up right behind the volcano. Unfortunately my picture uploading will be nonexistent here on PNG, the internet usage is based on buying cards that give you a megabite limit, and they’re not cheap.


1 comment:

  1. I hope that New Guinea is all you "dreamed" it would be,filling your next 7 weeks with tons of adventure and yes do take their good advise as they know best. Safe travels to you and Matt!!
    Happy Canada Day to you too!! this land is waiting for your return bud.