Photographic memories

November 30, 2013 at 11:41 pm (Angoram, artifacts, Bob Mackie, Commentary, Deborah Ruiz Wall, Don Bosgard, Dr Jan J Saave, East Sepik District, expatriates, Fr Fons Ruijter, Goya Henry, H.B.G. Larkin, Jim McKinnon, John Bowers, Kami Raymundus, Kevin Trueman, Michael Somare, Papua New Guinea, Paul Dennett, Peter Johnson, Photos, Sepik floods, Somare, Temlett Conibeer, W.M. Hughes)

Don Pybus in Sydney

Don Pybus in Sydney

 

Dieter with Peter Johnson, Sepik Ironman Competition, 07/06/2009

Dieter with Peter Johnson, Sepik Ironman Competition, 07/06/2009

Greetings from Goya 1968

Greetings from Goya 1968

A.C.T. Marke & John Kelly in the wilds of PNG

A.C.T. Marke & John Kelly in the wilds of PNG

1958 Leeton, contemplates a world trip  1961 Troppo on Kar Kar Island  1963 Driekikir

1958 Leeton, contemplates a world trip 1961 Troppo on Kar Kar Island 1963 Driekikir

Bill Eichhorn, MBE » Bill Eichhorn, successful entrepreneur and politician at home on the Keram River

Bill Eichhorn, successful entrepreneur and politician at home on the Keram River

Dave Wall at Kekten Village

Dave Wall at Kekten Village

William & Rosa Batak, Kekten Village

William & Rosa Batak, Kekten Village

png-7achief-minister-somare-angoram-1973

Ralf Stüttgen

Ralf Stüttgen

Sago 3   Sago 2   Sago Memories, thanks to Bob Beeke   Jock   Bob Beeke   Angoram Hotel

 d-d1Floods

kami,Torembi Village

kami,Torembi Village

Dave Wall & Jan Saave, some years after they left PNG

Dave Wall & Jan Saave, some years after they left PNG

Sue Treutlein & Bob Mackie at the Angoram Club

Sue Treutlein & Bob Mackie at the Angoram Club

Sanam Kabasse & Dave Wall

Sanam Kabasse & Dave Wall

Wewak Hospital

Wewak Hospital

Hand-written letter from W.M. Hughes to H.B.G. Larkin 2

Michael Somare, Angoram, 1973

Graeme Jones, Robyn Faulkner, Co-op Manager, Dave Bretherton, Jan Matysek, Clare & Des Hill, Bruce Ross, Pat Bretherton, Ella Lucas, Ronnie Lucas

Graeme Jones, Robyn Faulkner, Co-op Manager, Dave Bretherton, Jan Matysek, Clare & Des Hill, Bruce Ross, Pat Bretherton, Ella Lucas, Ronnie Lucas

outside the church 2

On the left, Eva Waramapi

On the left, Eva Waramapi

treutlein-xmas-party-sue-kev-babypng-6a2peter-johnson-mha

  1960sAngoram 1960s

The Rev. John Spender

The Rev. John Spender

David Augustus Wall & John Bowers in Como, early 1980s

David Augustus Wall & John Bowers in Como, early 1980s

Cedric Wyatt, Rick Wyatt, CWyatt - a legend in his own time!

Cedric Wyatt, Rick Wyatt, CWyatt – a legend in his own time!

Bob Becke with May & Harry Marchant, Two called to the bar at the Angoram Club, Jim McKinnon, Esther & Jim Stevens

Bob Becke with May & Harry Marchant, Two called to the bar at the Angoram Club, Jim McKinnon, Esther & Jim Stevens

Jock McIntyre & Bob Becke, Western District, PNG, 1960

Jock McIntyre & Bob Becke, Western District, PNG, 1960

Angoram Hotel Sepik.  Houseboat and powered canoes for guided tours along the mighty Sepik River. Angoram, Sepik District, New Guinea Photo Uwe Steinward (C) GNG 70

Angoram Hotel Sepik. Houseboat and powered canoes for guided tours along the mighty Sepik River. Angoram, Sepik District, New Guinea Photo Uwe Steinward (C) GNG 70

png3bnew-shots-224new-shots-208paul-david-danAngoram 1960s

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A tribute to the late Kevin Trueman by Peter Johnson

June 27, 2013 at 9:19 am (Angoram, Angoram Club, East Sepik District, East Sepik Province, expatriates, Kevin Trueman, Maprik, Papua New Guinea, Peter Johnson, Sepik River, Vanuatu, Wewak)

KEVIN WILLIAM PATRICK TRUEMAN

Long-time Pacific Islands Identity

(b. Winchester, England 20 September, 1944   d. Port Vila, Vanuatu 7 June, 2013)

 

Kevin Trueman whose sudden death at Port Vila, Vanuatu, the former New Hebrides Condominium, on the night of 7 June, 2013 surprised and shocked his family and multitude of friends around the South Pacific islands.

Kevin, of English and Irish parentage, was born in the ancient cathedral city of Winchester, Hampshire, England.   His family migrated to Australia whilst Kevin was still in his teens.   After several ordinary jobs he teemed up with Sava Maksic in kangaroo and crocodile hunting ventures.   They sold their crocodile skins to an Armenian reptile skin tanner, Arshak Catchatoor Galstaun, and in 1967 they came, as two young married couples to Angoram, where Galstaun was the new proprietor of England’s Hotel; the ladies managed the hotel and Kevin and Sava shot the Sepik crocodiles. Neither the job not the partnership lasted long, for Kevin was not by nature an employee…he was soon trading, shooting and artefact dealing on his own account travelling the Sepik River in the Heron, a small trawler he bought from  Nils Madsen.

Two lovely daughters, Laena and Justine were born in Wewak, and Kevin’s restless enthusiasm saw him move to Wewak in about 1971 to take advantage of the booming coffee industry around the Maprik area.   Kevin put in 10 and 12 hour working days, and still had time for a hectic social life. He took virtual charge of building the Wewak Yacht Club, was for several years the Commodore, and  subsequently made a life member.

In 1976 he built a steel work-boat Elenjay and sailed her to Honiara and Port Vila, I was privileged to be a crew member on that adventurous voyage – the only other crew was a pot smouldering Kiwi hippy yachtie who neither of us knew! On arrival Kevin was jailed for a day for the illegal landing of an unnamed vessel flying no national flag. The prosecuting Harbour Master later became a good friend and helped Kevin to secure a coastal coxen’s ticket. Kevin succeeded in selling his boat, eventually coming back to New Guinea to buy and sell another after trading around the islands for a while.

An entrepreneur who saw the “big picture”, Kevin, around 1980 invested in an ocean-going freighter, the Bismarck Sea, later expanding with a second. He tramped between Australia, New Guinea, the Philippines and Vietnam, but a serious accident at Palau and difficulties with the waterside workers of evil memory, and “big line” competition caused the closure of this enterprise…he turned his thoughts and attention to the land; in 1983 he bought “Wetlands Station” near Augathella in western Queensland – my sons and I enjoyed a week of the Truemans’ wonderful hospitality there, shooting, eating and with my sons joining the girls at School of the Air lessons.

Around 1990 Kevin was asked to return to Wewak to manage a recovery of the troubled Sepik Producers Coffee Association, a native owned, but now badly run cooperative. He accepted this almost thankless task with the full backing of the then prime minister, Sir Michael Somare. He established a most capable  management team of Evelyn, Herman Baumann; Geoff Payne and Dieter Idzikowsky.  Kevin had an inclusive style which made his efforts popular with his New Guinean shareholders and customers, and after a campaign against the “rice and tin fish” Asian competition (as Kevin called it), the business started to boom. He expanded into wholesale and retail sales of hardware and whitegoods and commercial vehicle repair. Again wanting to be completely his own boss he eventually resigned and returned to Australia…but not for long!

Kevin and Evelyn accepted jobs in Honiara, BSIP with Kevin managing a large hardware business and Evelyn a soap factory…goodness! They settled down just in time to experience the horror of the unrest in the Solomons which eventually resulted in the establishment of the RAMSI peacekeeping force.

In 2006 Kevin made what was to be his last island relocation as he moved from the troubled Solomons back to Vanuatu and established himself as a respected businessman, restaurateur, and political commentator. A true Island Entrepreneur of the “old school,” Kevin will lie in Pango cemetery, Port Vila, a fitting last resting place to be fondly remembered as a generous, vital outgoing personality of warmth and almost boyish enthusiasm for the numerous projects and ventures he pursued.

Kevin, a loving husband and father leaves a widow, Evelyn Avis, daughters Laena, Justine, and Alexandra, four grand-children and an army of friends across much of Oceania.

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Floods along the Sepik River

May 23, 2013 at 7:24 am (Angoram, Chu Leong, East Sepik District, East Sepik Province, Fr Mihalic, Norm Liddle, Papua New Guinea, Peter Johnson, PNG Health, Sara David, Sepik floods, Vivien Liddle)

Floods

Recently I accessed Sara David’s blog: midwiferybeyondborders.wordpress.com

Sara is an Australian midwife, and she is doing wonderful work helping and training Sepik River women in all aspects of birthing and child care.

One of her main trainees is Vivien Liddle of Kambaramba Village. In the old days when I lived in Angoram I knew Vivien’s father, Norm.

Vivien managed to get in touch with Sara in Australia and tell her about a terrible flood they were having now in the Sepik River area. This reminded me of the 1973 floods as reported in the above article in the Post-Courier.

I can imagine the difficulties this would be creating for the people, particularly the young mothers.

A look at Sara David’s blog is strongly recommended.

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Jock McIntyre, more a Nineteenth Century Scottish Adventurer than a Contemporary Figure

November 26, 2011 at 3:49 am (Commentary, expatriates, Papua New Guinea, Peter Johnson)

I first met Jock McIntyre in 1963 when he was the patrol officer in-charge at Dreikikir Patrol Post in the East Sepik District of Papua New Guinea – a tall good-looking Scotsman from Glasgow or nearabouts with a wealth of experience at Glasgow University, Canada, New Zealand, and the Western District of PNG.

His soft Scottish brogue and impregnable good manners, combined with a forceful individual nature in the company of men gave colour and attractiveness to his personality – men respected him and women liked the look of him. There was perhaps nothing that Jock liked more than to be surrounded with friends in long- drinking sessions.

John, to use his baptismal name, was a good healthy Presbyterian with the usual sectarian attitudes of the time, but the orange and the green didn’t influence who he would drink with. One of his best friends was Fr John O’Toole, the resident priest at Dreikikir. A Fenian or  even an American as O’Toole was, who liked a drink was good enough for Jock, even if at times both were more than forthright with each other.

At the University of Glasgow, where Jock studied veterinary medicine for a couple of years, he was a little put out with the fact that a Fenian beat him in the last round of a boxing match for the championship of the university. He did, however, concede that the Fenian was a better boxer than he was.

In the logging camps of Canada and in various jobs in New Zealand he worked hard but also played hard. He liked and respected the women he met, as I’m sure they liked and respected him. A fine figure would measure up to a good malt, but perhaps the fine malt would have at times beaten the fine figure.

He was a gentle giant in his work and dealings with the Papuan New Guineans – always fair and good humoured with them.

Jock was one of Kennecott’s early field officers, and I remember him arriving in Angoram from the Star Mountains laden with rock samples indicating the presence of vast amounts of copper and other metals in the Mount Fubilan area.

Perhaps a man for all seasons, but more a character out of the 19th century who lived in the 20th century.

He often said to me that his ideal was to live a full life overseas, but eventually return to mother Scotland, marry a Scottish lass, live as a respectable family man and keep holy the Sabbath Day.

Over the years I lost track of Jock, and I often wondered if he had achieved his ambition of returning to Scotland. Then someone said to me that he had died. It appears that he did marry a lass, I don’t know if she was Scottish, but apparently she owned a pub on Thursday Island. If this is true, in a way, it would put Jock in a second heaven, and I’m sure if he had died he’ve gone out with a good malt in his hand.

I often picture McIntye and O’Toole in the afterlife, for I know Fr O’Toole SVD has moved on, having a convivial drink together in the best Presbyterian and Catholic style.

Peter Johnson, an old friend of Jock’s, has in his possession Jock’s Oxford Dictionary, a small memento that continues to remind us of his life.

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Two famous Margarets: visitors to Angoram

July 27, 2011 at 3:25 am (Angoram, Commentary, John Pasquarelli, Margaret Mead, Margaret Olley, Papua New Guinea, Peter Johnson, Sepik River)

While the many visits of Margaret Mead to Angoram, the famous American cultural anthropologist, are well known and legendary, perhaps the one visit in 1968 (I think this was the year.) of Margaret Olley, the famous Australian painter, who died yesterday 26th July, is not so well known.
Peter Johnson in his email to John Pasquarelli poignantly reminds us of Margaret Olley’s visit:

Dear John,
I know you were quite close friends with Margaret, and am sure you are, as I am, saddened by the news today of her death.
I am in your debt for causing me the pleasure of hosting her at Angoram for several weeks, she was a delight to know and a good cook too! I was really a dumb young bloke then, as I wouldn’t sit for her – in too much of a hurry to get to the late lamented Angoram Club.
I never saw her again, but closely missed her on several occasions when she had left notes for me – it was always just too late!
Her biographer wrote about her Angoram stay, “that she stayed in a riverside house with some patrol officer” I took the liberty of writing to her with a bit of a whinge…she sent me a copy of her book with the passage crossed out and “no, I stayed with my friend, Peter Johnson.” Written in, in her own hand. This is now something to treasure!
Just a few thoughts of happier days.

Pete

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