Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Unpacking stored items

One of the first things that I’ll be doing when I get to Buka is taking things out of storage and repacking them for going back to the village. There are my own personal belongings as well as the things that Rebekah and I share, such as pots and plates, etc.

It will be interesting to see how it goes – we put everything in the metal shipping container back in December last year – that was a long time ago! The main challenge will be to see if I can find everything that belongs to me/us. I’m not sure if the contents of the container have been rearranged since we left, and if that’s the case, it will be REALLY interesting to see where our things are, but even if they’re where we left them, it’s still going to be a challenge, because the container is full of other people’s stored items too, and our boxes were just packed in various spots around the container, not just all in one corner.

The shipping container is all metal, so on a hot, sunny day, it’s like an oven in there (and most people would think it is hot enough outside)! So as you can imagine, you don’t want to be in there too long, but because I don’t know how many boxes to look for and where exactly they all are, I will have to spend some time standing in there, scanning around to see if something jumps out at me as belonging to us. Some things will be easy to find, others may be a bit more of a challenge.

I also wonder how the heat and humidity has treated my clothes – will they be covered in mould and falling apart? Will have to wait and see.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Minor differences

I’ve been thinking recently about a few of the minor things that will be different when I go back to Bougainville, and things that I’ll need to try and remember. Here are some below:

Grass seeds: Firstly, try to remember to pay attention to the length of the grass, so that I don’t walk through it and get seeds all through my skirt. Failing that, I will have the leisurely activity of picking grass seeds out of my skirt. It’s a great slow pace of life activity.

Head torch: I need to remember that if I have my torch switched on, try not to look at people, as wherever my head turns, there the torch shines also, and people don’t appreciated being blinded by the light. I have a terrible habit of doing that!

Leg cramps: Quite often in the morning I get cramps in my calves just as I am waking up in the village. It’s rather annoying. I don’t know why it happens, but maybe my body gets dehydrated during the night which might trigger it.

Exact change: I’ve been used to paying for things however I like here in Australia, using my bank card, or just handing over a note. In Buka however, it’s best to pay with the exact change, because there’s always a shortage of change in the register at the shops, or at the market the sellers often don’t have enough change either. Of course, when you pay the exact amount for a lot of things, you end up running out of change yourself!

Sunscreen: I don’t like putting sunscreen on, but if I know I’m going to be out in the sun for a while, I’d better put it on.

Crabs: Sometimes when you’re sitting at the beach, you see these tiny crabs scurrying along the sand. It’s not hugely fascinating or exciting or anything, but your eye just takes it in, and I remembered about it today when I saw a crab on TV.