Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Port Moresby adventures – Parliament House

After going to the Botanical Gardens, we headed to Parliament House. While we were waiting outside the Botanical Gardens for the right bus to come, a van belonging to the Botanical Gardens came out and offered us a ride. It was a cargo van and just had a driver and passenger seat, so the three of us were sitting on the floor in the back of the van, with only a rear window. It felt rather funny! Here’s a picture of me in the van:

The Parliament House was architecturally designed and it incorporates several traditional building styles into this fancy modern building. Here are two pictures of the main feature of the building.

We went inside and had a tour. Photos aren’t allowed to be taken inside, so unfortunately I can’t show you those things. We saw a display of gifts that had been given by other countries to PNG, including a chair that had been given by Australia. There was a very large wood carving, which had sections of carving from different areas of the country. We also saw displays of insects that had been mounted. There were moths, butterflies, beetles, stick insects, cockroaches and more. PNG has the biggest moth and biggest butterfly in the world.

We also sat in the Parliament viewing platform and saw where they hold Parliament. Everything that is spoken is simultaneously translated into the three official languages: English, Tok Pisin and Motu. Members can wear headphones and choose which language they wish to listen to.

Outside, the grounds were pretty too. We saw the busts of the Prime Ministers of PNG, and I think this one below is of the current Prime Minister, Sir Michael Somare (my apologies to him if I am wrong!)

Part of a crocodile mosaic:

It was quite a busy day with going to the Botanical Gardens first, then the Parliament House, plus doing a little bit of shopping at a market too. I was glad to be able to put my feet up at the end of the day!

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