Monday, December 29, 2014

Ending the year in style on Fisherman's Island

Story and pictures by  MALUM NALU

On Sunday, Dec 28, 2014, my elder brother David and his children invited my children and I for a day cruise to Daugo (Fisherman's) Island off Port Moresby.
Also joining us were his tambu (sister-in-law) Geno and her kids, as well as our cousin Yapi Delabu, all the way from our home at Butibam village in Lae.

Maus Wara on Fisherman's Island

Sun, surf, and sand

Boats galore

We had a wonderful time, leaving the yacht club at about 10am on the BAT vessel Maus Wara, didn’t try out the fishing unfortunately, and then ended up at the island where we swam and enjoyed lunch.

With my daughter  Moasing and niece Lautuoc

My son Jr and niece Lautuoc

Building sand castles

Family having fun

The kids had a great time swimming, playing on the sand, and taking pictures with their GoPro camera, which produced some unbelievable shots (I have to get one for the New Year).
GoPro shot 1 by VELEKIRI NALU

GoPro shot 2 by LAVAU NALU

My baby son Keith

My daughter Moasing and me

I took along my still and video cameras as well to capture these moments for posterity as well as post pictures live to Facebook for family and friends to see.
Twas great to see the large number of expatriates on Fisherman's Island enjoying the sun, surf, and sand in bikinis, and freely talking and mixing with the locals, even buying and eating cooked fish.

A game of beach volleyball.

Fun in the sun

Good to see the large number of expatriates
It made me wonder why Papua New Guineans, including leaders, are taking their holidays overseas and in other Pacific countries.

Endless white sandy beaches bring the words of one of my favourite poems to mind
Footprints in the Sand

One night I dreamed I was walking along the beach with the Lord.
Many scenes from my life flashed across the sky....

In each scene I noticed footprints in the sand.
Sometimes there were two sets of footprints,
other times there were one set of footprints.

This bothered me because I noticed
that during the low periods of my life,
when I was suffering from
anguish, sorrow or defeat,
I could see only one set of footprints.

So I said to the Lord,
"You promised me Lord,
that if I followed you,
you would walk with me always.
But I have noticed that during
the most trying periods of my life
there have only been one
set of footprints in the sand.
Why, when I needed you most,
you have not been there for me?"

The Lord replied,
"The times when you have
seen only one set of footprints,
is when I carried you."

- Mary Stevenson


Big brother David, nephew Vele, cousin Yawi, niece Zarin (back), and cousin Yapi

My son Jr

Historically, Fisherman’s (Daugo) is an abandoned WW11 strip, which until some years ago was used by trainee pilots from Port Moresby.
By 1944, Port Moresby had six airfields.
 Jackson was the largest, and was named after Australian ace pilot John Jackson, leader of RAAF Squadron 75, who was killed in a dogfight against Japanese planes over Port Moresby on April 28, 1942.
Wartime airfields in the area included the following:Kila Drome (3 Mile) Airfield for fighters and bombers; Ward Drome (5 Mile) Airfield for heavy bombers and transport planes; Jackson Airport (7 Mile) Main airfield still in use today by Air Niugini; Berry Drome (12 Mile) Fighter and medium bomber base near Bomana; Schwimmer (14 Mile) Fighter and medium bomber base; Durand Airstrip (17 Mile) Fighter and medium bomber base; Rogers (Rarona, 30 Mile) Fighter and medium bomber base; Fisherman's (Daugo) Emergency landing strip on off shore island
After 4pm, after a lot of fun in the sun, surf, and sand, and lots to eat and drink, it was homeward bound.
Homeward bound

View of Port Moresby from the sea on Sunday afternoon. Note that Paga Hill to the right of this picture, the controversies of which I've written a lot about this year, is shaved bare for a multi-million dollar housing estate.
Along the way, we passed Gemo Island, which is one of a number of abandoned gun emplacements, bunkers and fortifications during WW11, and the site of a hospital for leprosy and tuberculosis patients from 1937-1974.

It looked so quiet but would tell so much if it could talk.

Gemo Island
These were constructed by Australian Engineers in 1944, but never used, then abandoned after the war: Basalisk Battery Largest, three gun battery to the west of Moresby; Paga Hill Battery Gun battery and radar set location hill outside Moresby; Gemo Island Battery Gun position on offshore island, overlooking the east; Bootless Bay Battery Gun position at Bootless Bay; Boera Battery Gun position west of Port Moresby.
A great was to end 2014 in style.

Me and Captain Martin at the wheel

PS: A Happy New Year 2015 to readers of this blog and thank you for all your support in 2014.


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