The Village People


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Asia » Indonesia » West Papua » Cenderawasih Bay
November 2nd 2011
Published: November 5th 2011
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Palm Tree ChopPalm Tree ChopPalm Tree Chop

This woman was chopping the insides of a palm tree that they break up and eat. Her blade was coming within centimeters of her feet on each swing. Women do most of the work in these villages......I might move here.
Throughout this journey, we have been stopping at villages along the way to see if they would be something that our boss might be interested in seeing. Each village has been located in incredibly remote areas that have really been untouched by current civilization. It's not a bad thing. It has been really interesting. I swear that I think we are pretty much the only white people that most of the locals in these villages have ever seen. The first village we pulled up to, called Yendi, was located right on the water. We dropped the anchor, and 5 minutes later there were 6 dugout canoes hovering around our stern, just curious, seeing what we were up to. They weren't trying to sell anything, they weren't begging for anything, they just wanted to have a look at us and our spaceship.

We went ashore and took a stroll through the village with one of our guides, who speaks Indonesian. The entire village pretty much came out to take a look at us. We saw many interesting things on this short walk back in time.

The second village we stopped at was called Kwantisore, and we had to 'check in'
HarbormasterHarbormasterHarbormaster

The guy rockin the purple shorts was the 'harbormaster'. Looked like another vampire, smoking cigarettes and eating beetlenut.
at the park ranger station there. Myself and the ranger that was traveling with us went ashore to check in. He did not speak any English, which made it kind of interesting, as I was just escorting him around, to make sure that he was actually doing something for us. We had to find four specific people to hand over our park entrance permits to, and he took me on a wild goose chase through this village to find them.

We had to find a ranger, an army officer, the chief of police, and the harbormaster......from what I could gather. We walked all over this little village looking for them. The first guy was found pretty easily, as he was sitting around doing nothing right next to the dock. The second guy was out of the 'office', so we continued on. The third guy that we were looking for was the chief of police, and we found him standing on the street, watching another guy weedwack his yard. After him, we asked around and after a few more stops, we found the harbormaster. We eventually found them all, with the missing one popping out from around the corner with
KidsKidsKids

I had just taken a picture of the two of them on my camera, and then showed it to them. I don't think that they'd ever seen anything like it and really didn't know what to make of it!
two machetes in hand, on our walk back to the tender. The whole time I was being spied on by all of the locals, children and adults alike, just out of curiosity of the tall white guy in clean clothes.


Additional photos below
Photos: 15, Displayed: 15


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Keepin it RealKeepin it Real
Keepin it Real

Enough said! An ode to their cannibalistic roots. This statue was, ironically, located between two churches, in front of the graves of some missionaries.
WWII PropWWII Prop
WWII Prop

There was a random airplane prop in the middle of the village, and we were guessing that it possibly came off of a World War II era Japanese Zero. The fuselage from the wreckage of a Zero could be found in the ocean a few miles from the village.
War GodWar God
War God

This man was explaining that this carving was of their war god, Cormar. Looked cool, so I bought it from him. He was the only guy in the village selling anything, at least as far as I could tell.
White ManWhite Man
White Man

Missionaries played an important role in the development of the area, as you can see by the many churches around, even in really small and remote areas like this.


5th November 2011

What a great group of photos. It seemed like going back in time. Amazing. I guess that children the world over are amazed and happy to see their own "instant" photos!
10th July 2013

Great read!
Just come across your blog, thanks for posting! I am desperate to visit the Dani Tribe in West Papua however, money is becoming an issue now.I love places like this the 'out there' and off the beaten track locations are the best! I too have a travel blog of my trip around South East Asia if you wish to have a peep. Indonesia will be added v.soon! Thanks,<a href="http://www.throughhelenhighwater.wordpress.com" Helen www.throughhelenhighwater.wordpress.com

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