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06 March 2017


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"We old men, perhaps finding ourselves a bit surprised to still be alive..." And I wonder how we in PNG will get on with Australia, when you are all gone...

I hope our sons and daughters will remain friends of PNG. Certainly that is the case in my family - KJ

Mackellar, Simbu is the only place you will find in the highlands where anyone including women and girls can walk freely in the night without any harassments. This reflects what kind of people live in Simbu. You cannot do that in Mt Hagen or any other centres.

Dear Keith,

It must be a tremendous feeling and Macclesfield must seem light years away. My nephew, who is currently training to be a pilot in Coffs Harbour, lived at Matehau, which is a small village on the left hand side, just before you start to climb the Daulo pass. He also lived at Mandow for a short while.
I have stayed overnight in the village on several occasions and my enduring memory is how delicious the fruit and vegetables tasted, especially the aibeka, pineapples and Goroka strawberries. It is such a fabulous country as soon as you get out of Mosbi.

It was a concerted contribution of ideas, time and effort from the SWA members and Simbu Provincial Government. Thanks to every body for playing their part.

Some say that the road through Simbu was built a million years too soon, meaning that subsidence and land movement will make for endless problems. Alternative routes can perhaps be looked at. At the same time prompt maintenance would improve matters.

Anyway Keith and Ingrid, enjoy your return visit. But as they say, - you can never step in the river twice - it has changed by the time you take the second step. But as you noted, good people are still there.

Thank you for the story, Keith. I was suppose to give a daily account of the visit but I just couldn't find the time and also felt so weak and didn't have the energy to do anything at the end of each day so I didn't write any story. But looking forward to reading more from you.

Francis was the key man in this visit - organiser, strategist, diplomat - head and four wheels fully engaged. The new collaboration between the provincial government and SCF/SWF is a real tribute to his skills and persistence - KJ

Thank you. Keith. But tell us more, particularly about the law and order situation in Simbu. For example, is there a Coroner's Court to investigate tribal murders, or are these matters settled in the traditional way.

Also, are there any rascols in the towns and how do the local police deal with them, and so on. Keep us all informed. We are all interested. Enjoy your visit to the Highlands.

Law and order in Simbu is well controlled. Kundiawa is a town you can move freely and safely around - even if you are a woman, unusual in urban PNG - KJ


Thanks for stirring heart-warming memories of friends and places from a long distant past.

The Toowong Rotary club will be thrilled by the news that their efforts in providing library books are appreciated locally. Again, a very big thanks to Terry Shelley and family for identifying the book project and for their generous physical and financial support that made it all happen.

I look forward to the next chapter in your Chimbu odyssey.

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