Sometimes things here go like this:

A week and a half ago, the guys brought a bunch of stuff to the beach in Biliau to be shuttled up to Maweroro – tools and wood – and they also brought 12 big drums of heli fuel so we wouldn’t have to pay for the helicopter to fly back to their base to refuel. So they shuttled everything up the mountain, and before the last heli left, Matt called to say goodbye to Cameron and to tell her that someone at the beach would put the empty fuel drums on a boat and send them to Madang. Could we pick them up and return them to the gas station? Yes.

Matt was the last one of the three guys to leave the beach, and in Maweroro they don’t have cell coverage. So… wait. We don’t know what time the boat is coming. We also don’t know the phone number of Jimmy who runs the boat. Hmm. And we don’t know the number of the guy at the beach who is putting the drums onto the boat.

So, I went to the wharf and gave the security guy my phone number, telling him that the Manam boat has cargo for me and can he call when it arrives. As I am talking to him, the boss of the wharf comes up and tries to help. (Pretty much whenever we are in a new place trying to do something we make quite a scene… “What is this white lady doing at the wharf? Let’s go try to talk to her.”) After a few phone calls we find that the boat will arrive at 10pm and we can come get the drums at 8am the next morning.

8am the next morning, Cameron and I drive to the wharf and the Manam is there. Success! But after talking to the crew, no one has our drums and no one even knows who Jimmy is. Ha!

So that is how things go here sometimes. Just a peak into life this season.

Here are pics from the day the men loaded the boat in Madang to take the wood to Biliau:

(The pic above is Jude on a boat. I didn’t have any pictures of fuel drums…)




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