Go Back   Papua New Guinea Forum > Travel and Tourism in Papua New Guinea > The Journey to Paradise > Sepik River

Sepik River Adventures along the sepik river in Papua New Guinea

 
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 21-08-2003, 11:22 PM
aussie's Avatar
aussie aussie is offline
Pls help me to help PNG
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Port Moresby
Posts: 10,543
aussie is on a distinguished road
Pikinini Sepik by William Natera (Wantok Reporter)

IT is a quiet afternoon in Kirimbit, a typical Papua New Guinean village in the Chambri Lakes of the East Sepik province. Seven men are chopping wood for fire for the mothers, the sounds echoing through the stillness, accepted, one of the daily chores of village life. They work fast. They work hard.

Not too much is unusual about this scene, except that there are alot of people gathered around to watch this mundane task, smiling and talking excitedly. The mothers especially are delighted.

These men are Australians, and their journey to the Chambri Lakes, described as Pius Wasi as "the most beautiful and peaceful place on earth" was like their ride along the Sepik highway in a truck overloaded with bags of rice bound for Pagwi, rocky but exhillarating.

It began over a few beers in Melbourne at the start of 2002 when Pius, a Kirimbit boy, founder of the PNG Arts Council and patriot if ever there was one, on a visit, spoke proudly about his home to Russel Bradley, the drummer of Australian contemporary band Not Drowning Waving. Russel had asked how a trip to Kirimbit would be possible. "You find the funds and I'll take you there," Pius had answered.

It was an invitation that Pius did not expect to be taken seriously. But a month or so later while in Port Moresby he received a telephone call from Russel who said that funds had been secured and the group would arrived in Wewak on August 31. Pius left for Wewak to wait for them, the conversation with Russel the only one they would have before their arrival, which kept the Australians rather anxious.

When the Air Nuigini flight with the men touched down in Wewak, Pius was waiting and prepared to offer the Papua New Guinea experience in a most 'unexpected' fashion. "From now on you will walk, talk, think and act like Sepiks, I want you to feel like Papua New Guineans," he said.
Convinced that tourists to the country are being harrassed because they choose to stay in four-star hotels and travel in expensive hire cars to locations only on the tourist map, Pius wanted his charges to feel safe by taking a 'when in Papua New Guinea, do as the Papua New Guineans' approach.

He had booked only two rooms for the seven men at the modest town hotel and had told them "I don't care how you all fit in, but fit in". They spent their nights crowded in the rooms, the days they spent walking the town's streets, the people there pleasantly surprised to see the 'wait-skins' standing at the market bus stop with plastic bags of fruits and vegatables waiting to catch a PMV back to the hotel.

After two days in town the men travelled the Sepik highway to Kirimbit on a PMV truck. And after they had helped the vehicle's driver unload his cargo of rice at Maprik and were then left stranded after he told them he was not completing his route; and cadged a lift on a passing hilux which broke down along the way, they finally arrived at Pagwi at 11 o'clock at night and slept outside a tradestore. They awoke to the sun rising over the great Sepik River.

A canoe rigged with a motor took them along the river to Kirimbit where they were billeted to families, Pius wanting them to learn first hand how the people lived. And the lessons were many. From wood cutting and sago scraping to the finer arts of history, carving and music, the men, musicians, journalists, photographers, and even a soldier, were willing pupils.

Pius was pleased as he watched them mingle with the people. It gave him hope in Papua New Guinea's tourism industry and added faith in the 'grassroot' approach to it.

After about five days the men left Kirimbit taking a different route which would allow them to see more of the Sepik River. Not even the earthquake on September 9 could shake them from the excitement of the journey, and they were found in a village pub along the river that morning nursing a couple of stubbies.

The day after they flew back to Australia via Port Moresby with their photographs and film footage of their experiences, which will help form the case that Pius is hoping to present to the Tourism Promotion Authority (TPA) about a package trip to the Chambri Lakes from Australia.

Pius is satisfied. Satisfied that the journey went so well and that the Australians enjoyed themselves. There are many memories. But he will always remember that day at Kirimbit when they had gone tracking and had stood on the highest point of the village and looked over the Chambri Lakes. It was then that the Australians, in awe of the splendour of the lakes, had agreed that it really was the most beautiful and peaceful place on earth.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg chambri-lakes500--sepik-riv.jpg (68.8 KB, 353 views)
Reply With Quote
Connect With Facebook to "Like" This Thread

HotelsCombined.com - Pack full of the best deals
  #2  
Old 21-08-2003, 11:24 PM
aussie's Avatar
aussie aussie is offline
Pls help me to help PNG
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Port Moresby
Posts: 10,543
aussie is on a distinguished road
After about five days the men left Kirimbit taking a different route which would allow them to see more of the Sepik River. Not even the earthquake on September 9 could shake them from the excitement of the journey, and they were found in a village pub along the river that morning nursing a couple of stubbies.

The day after they flew back to Australia via Port Moresby with their photographs and film footage of their experiences, which will help form the case that Pius is hoping to present to the Tourism Promotion Authority (TPA) about a package trip to the Chambri Lakes from Australia.

Pius is satisfied. Satisfied that the journey went so well and that the Australians enjoyed themselves. There are many memories. But he will always remember that day at Kirimbit when they had gone tracking and had stood on the highest point of the village and looked over the Chambri Lakes. It was then that the Australians, in awe of the splendour of the lakes, had agreed that it really was the most beautiful and peaceful place on earth.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg dug-out-canoes-sepik-river.jpg (24.6 KB, 344 views)
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Lae War Cemetery & Listings of all people who are buried there. aussie War History 33 08-05-2018 02:26 PM
Port Moresby (Bomana) War Cemetery & Listings of all people who are buried there. aussie War History 152 16-11-2013 06:44 PM
Wantok Reporter, William Natera, remembers a trip to Japan in 2002 and the friendship aussie Site News 0 23-10-2003 08:29 AM
Wantok Reporter, William Natera, remembers a trip to Japan in 2002 and the friendship aussie Your Story and Experiences 6 23-10-2003 08:27 AM
Pikinini Sepik by William Natera (Wantok Reporter) aussie Site News 0 21-08-2003 11:31 PM


All times are GMT +11. The time now is 03:01 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright© 2000-2015 Matryx Limited.
Hosted by Quadra Hosting