Love Swarm

The People of Kilau

Jungle Paint
Jungle Paint

My face is really starting to hurt from smiling so much. Like my cheeks  are working some serious overtime here in the village of Kilau, PNG! Spent all day walking up and down the windy mountain road between the two bridges that mark the village boarders and everywhere I look are bright eyes and smiling faces staring back at me. Hands waving through the air and then reaching out to grab a hold of mine. Like, you know that feeling when you’re on a boat for too long and when you get off you can still feel the rolling waves beneath you. Well that’s how my arm feels right now from having it shook all day.

Mt. Ellenberry Quartz
Mt. Ellenberry Quartz

Met a few notable characters along my stroll including one man who’s over a hundred years old and another who managed to find a solid piece of quartz crystal bigger than my fist in a cave nearby. Quite the score if I do say so myself. Although I guess now it seems I’ve been appointed as the chief of marketing to sell the giant chunk of stone as I’m clearly a qualified geologist so I guess I need to get to work on that. Soooo how about it…any takers? They reckon it’s worth at least a billion Kina but I think there’s room for negotiation. Chain linked with roughly thirty blissful children, we strolled until dusk and then returned home for an extra special treat, a sing sing arranged just for yours truly 🙂

Decked out for a Sing-Sing
Decked out for a Sing-Sing

So what is a sing sing you ask? Well normally these take place at things like weddings and other notable events, like tatted up white dudes showing up at your doorstep to stay a few nights. Locals paint themselves up in an array of colorful designs and adorn crowns strewn from feathers of birds of paradise, then sit all together and sing songs and dance. Generally reserved for uber important occasions it was an amazing honour to be made a part of this traditional experience and my body is still buzzing with excitement! They even painted me up for good measure and gave me the biggest crown in the bunch! I think PNG just made it to the top of my most humbling moments of life list!

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