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02 October 2018

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You should go Phil, you will be amazed. At last year's Queensland Sunshine Coast reunion, the attendance was 306, not counting those who arrived late and did not register.

In addition to kiaps, some wives of deceased kiaps also attended. One kiap's widow came all the way from the UK just to be there. Also there were some children of kiaps, who although now middle aged, have bonded together because of a shared childhood in PNG maybe 50 years ago.

It is also interesting to know that the same nostalgia which binds old kiaps together also binds other former residents of PNG. Parallel to the Kiaps website is the blog "I used to live in Papua New Guinea" with daily contributions from former pilots of MAL, PATAIR and Qantas, former planters, teachers, mechanics, accountants, miners, business owners and so on, with photos of Samarai pre war, Ela Beach when the RSL was there, and so on, and scads of photos from middle aged expats of when they were kids at school in PNG.

It is amazing how former residence in PNG has bonded so many people together. It just shows how powerful nostalgia can be.

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