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Photos and Scenery of Papua New Guinea We welcome your photos of Papua New Guinea in here. This is an exclusively photo only area. Comments or questions should go into the Tourism Discussion area.

 
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  #21  
Old 09-02-2002, 11:18 PM
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Traditional House

Traditional House
Story by Sanang Zazoring, Photographs by Liesel Strauss, Paradise MagazineOct, 1992.:

Smoke seeps through the grass roof of the bush house. I see no chimney. I endter the house and see nothing except hte fireplace in the middle. No window, only a door. the family sits around the fire and I think about home. The place where the mother cooks the food radiates cosiness and life. I participate in this atmosphere. I sit silently and speechless, watching what is going on and I look around to admire the construction of the house.

I lieve in a town and I love to visit people who live in bush houses - places where families hold conversations, make their decisions, eat and live. In some areas, pigs and other animals live with people in the same house, separated by a curtain made of banana leaves.

The land with its people is part of myself. The way they live shows me that whatever they need for life they find in nature. The people are gifted. Their pig feasts, their method of cooking in the ground, growing their gardens and the way they build their bush house proves it.

Many Paradise readers will not have a chance to see a bush house or experience the building of one. Let me describe the procedure.

Community participation is needed when a house is to be built in the Highlands. Everyone in the area knows how to build one, using methods passed down by their ancestors, employing traditional technology and materials.

People depended and relied wholly on themselves before foreign technologies were introduced. It was the father's responsibility to decide what kind of house to build and how big it should be. The family has to pay for the help received from the community by providing food and drinks.

Different regions of the Highlands have different styles of houses.

No modern technology or architectural planning is involved in building a house. All a person knows is what sort of materials he needs, how big the house is to be and where it should be built. He plans everything in his mind. He then starts collecting and gathering posts and other materials. The posts are fashioned from a certain type of tree tha tcan last for at least 20 years. the roofing timbers are usually young timber. The builder does not have a machine to cut and saw them into standard sizes for roofing. Instead, he and his helpers shape them with axes.

Women and their daughters, collect kunai grass for the roof, helped by other women in the community.

It takes some months for the man to collect the type of ropes needed to build a bush house. The ropes are kept in cool places. some types of ropes are buried in the mud so that they do not get dried up in the sun. The mud also protects and makes the ropes firm and strong. Mostly cane ropes are used.

People often used tree bark for walls, but nowadays bamboo and pitpit are commonly woven around the house.

No foundation is laid. to show the position of the wall posts, sticks are planted. wild sugar cane (pitpit) and ropes are used to fasten across and around the roof where the kunai grass cana be laid and firmly fastened. The kunai grass is then laid from the bottom end of the roof to the top to prevent rain leaking throught.

It looks as if there is no window. It is hard to see because it is no bigger than a fist. Holes are left between the walls and roof where the smoke passes through and light is let in. smoke also escapes by seeping throughthe kunai roof.

The fireplace is in the centre of the house where the family gathers to cook and eat. There are no bedrooms where children are separated form the parents. Boys sleep with fathers while girls sleep with mothers and spend most of their time with them.

The kunai grass of the roof is often replaced. the burning fire keeps the house from rotting and prevents termites from eating up the timbers. It also keeps ropes from being rotted away.

the type of material collected to make the fire does not create too much smoke in the house. The fire burns all through the night providing warmth. In the evening a big fire is banked to provide embers that keep the house warm.

The spirit of co-operation ensures that every family has a chance to have other people help them build their house. In the same way, people rely on each other for food, work, defence and other aspects of their livelihood.

There are some things which do not look and feel inviting to those who are there for the first time: the tears from the smoke, the smell, the dust of the floor and the flea bites. But that is the way people live and have lived for ages. When we start knowing them better, then we can see that this is a good way of living.
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Old 09-02-2002, 11:22 PM
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Highland Bilum

Highland Bilum, made from the fur of a cuscus (tree kangaroo):
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  #23  
Old 16-02-2002, 01:52 PM
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Haus Poroman

Haus Poroman - which means, appropriately, enough, a 'house of friends'.
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Old 16-02-2002, 01:53 PM
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Haus Poroman

Lodge staff weeding the flower garden:
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Old 16-02-2002, 01:55 PM
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Haus Poroman

Lodge garden overlooks rolling high country.

Top left, traditional bridge crossing.

Bottom right, splash of color in the flower garden.
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Old 16-02-2002, 02:11 PM
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Accommodation

Looking for somewhere to stay - Coral Sea Hotels 'Highlander Hotel', Mt. Hagen
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Old 24-02-2002, 12:32 PM
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Mt. Hagen

Map showing where Mt. Hagen is situated in relation to the rest of Papua New Guinea:
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Old 24-02-2002, 12:33 PM
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Mt. Hagen

Grass Huts on a mountain top village:
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Old 24-02-2002, 01:25 PM
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Mt Hagen

Looking to aircraft hire in Mt Hagen:
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Old 26-02-2002, 08:40 PM
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Oilmin

Oilmin, Mt. Hagen
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