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Published: August 19th 2018
Friday Laundry day
Anchoring and tender noises were slightly less this morning enabling a 7-30am sleep in. Today we are visiting Kiriwina Island which is the largest of the Trobiand island group in the Milne Bay Province. 290 km square with most of the 12,000 Trobriand island people living on this island. People have breakfasted early and the tenders are away again, but we shall do what we did yesterday and wait until free tender time. So what else should I do to fill in time but do washing of course. Pacific Eden has a public laundrette on decks 5, 6, and 9 with 3x $1 coins for a wash and same again for a dry. Washing powder is dispensed free and automatically with the commencement of the wash cycle. 28 mins of sitting in the nearby foyer sees the wash done. Drying in the cabin is an issue with only a tiny line across the shower available so dryer it is. Of course there is a laundry service if you are feeling wealthy or lazy or both. The arrival of The Eden is the only cash economy for this group of people and it is milked for all it is
worth. There is no planned P&O activities so unsuspecting passengers have to run the gauntlet of the enterprising islanders. This ranges from saleable items such as carvings, billum bags, weaving and trinkets to photo ops with children dressed up, a very sleepy cuscus, a parrot, and tours of a village and their homes to food and drink for sale. I really loathe this sort of tourism, many people think they are doing such a good thing and gave freely, eg. 60kina for a village tour, but I hate this dependency type of economy and I won't be part of perpetuating it. We tried to find something genuine and hiked up the path away from the stalls and chatted to some lovely little girls who were between 5-7 years of age. One had some English, the others nothing but it was lovely and we exchanged names and one walked along for a while holding my hand. Everywhere small children approached with crisp new AUS$ wanting to change them for Kina. The kids were even in the canoes trying for a last minute pitch as we lined up on the jetty to board the tenders back to the boat. A couple of
huge sharks had been caught and were being divided up amongst the villagers, 3Kina for a 1kg chunk. We did manage to speak to a couple of people who just didn't want to fleece us of our money. Brilliant English, most would be trilingual with their Plase Tok, Tok Pisin and then English. Tonight on board was a brilliant modern dance show, called Twice Upon a Time. Post apocalyptic theme, just brilliant. Stunning dancing, avatar type of singing, original choreo and costumes, a show piece. Dr Helen Gardener from Deakin Uni returned today with a 3/4 hour lecture on Numba 2 fait ( The 2nd WW) detailing the advance and retreat of The Japanese in the Pacific. Congratulations P&O on including this in the ships activities, a very welcome addition.
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