The first time I traveled to SHP, there were some problems. The 2002 elections had destroyed Tari and Mendi and left both Towns a smoldering wreck. I arrived in Tari some 4 years after the devastation to find a charred and screwed up Town. It kinda reminded me of Wilcannia… kinda.
While Tari was just a shell of its former self, Mendi was struggling to rebuild itself, only marginally calling itself the Provincial Administrative Centre, the
I thought it would be an ideal time to plan a holiday and a visit to the
I spotted three Birds of Paradise, the King of Saxony, the Ribbon Tailed Astrapia and the Superb. I spent time with the most fearsome of all Highland Warriors, the Huli, and I learnt much about their culture and their way of life, from childhood to funeral rites. I was able to trek into the Mountains as high as twice the height I had ever been in
The next year in 2007, I returned to the
On a Sunday with a few crew from the Gas Field, we took a slow boat to complete a lazy lap of
There was a moment of joy where I spent some time talking about Bixa orellana with some of the local kids. This was a find of mine when I recently lived in the far North of Australia and had never seen this amazing seed and its pod before. The kids knew the whole deal, and there weren’t much I could tell them, this plant had been there long before they were born…. The only catch was that none of them knew that this plant was introduced to their country from