Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Views of Port Moresby thru glass

,I have been in Port Moresby a bit lately so thought I'd post a couple of photos of the capital of PNG that HWDB took through a fixed-glass pane window in the Crown Plaza Hotel (hence the quality!!). I usually don't take my camera because when I go for work there is no opportunity to sight-see, but this time we were on the way back from holidays so there was a camera with us.

Port Morseby is a busy, sprawling port but has all the problems of most 3rd-world capitals. The urban drift has lead to large numbers of unemployed people in unserviced and crime-ridden settlement areas. It is isolated from the rest of the country though and the only way in is by air or ship. There is talk of a new highway linking the highlands, but local Port Morsebians are not happy about making the capital even more accessible to people leaving their villages for the Bright Lights. When I was down last week one of the local people told me there was 80% unemployment.

Port Moresby is situated in a rain-shadow and is a lot drier than the rest of the country. In the dry season it is often arid and dusty, but at the moment heavy rains have left it lush and green.
It is set along some beautiful coastline and many people have boats and go fishing and diving in the stunning waters.

I do like the place - shopping and restaurants are good and the buzz of the place is quite exciting for a girl from a quiet tropical island!!!


Anonymous said...

Hi Jules,
Well we arrived back yesterday after a truly amazing few days in Kokopo and Rabaul. The pure raw energy of the volcano combined with the most spectacular snokelling so far in PNG. Sorry we didn't catch up, the time really did just fly by. It was a bit of a shock coming back to Port Moresby after Rabaul, there is just an air of aggression here that was not present in your neck of the woods. Vanessa, a friend of mine and PNG national described it well to me this morning. She says people are hungry here and it makes them act like a lion. Would love to keep in contact.


Jules said...

Hi Bernadette - great to hear from you.

Sorry I missed your phone call but I went to work for a few hours.
So glad you liked the place - I was worried you may have had trouble getting close to the volcano as it seemed to be very ashy over Rabaul.
Yes life here is much more relaxed and people much less "hungry"" (great description).

Did you get to Pigeon Is ?? Where were you snorkelling?

Would love to keep in touch - give me a ring and I'll give you my email address so we can meet up sometime.

Kris McCracken said...

Can the unemployed pick up any sort of work around the port, or is it just begging? It’s hard to imagine the effect that this sort of thing has on everything and everyone around it.

dive said...

You'd think that somewhere in one of those containers would be a decent broadband wireless transmitter for our Jules.
Oh, well.

Anonymous said...

Fantastic and amazing photos and an almost newspaper post.
I liked the information provided in it and, like Kris, would like to know more about unemployed and how do they manage around?

Anonymous said...

There is a lot of history associate with Port Morsby from World War II days. I liked your photographs in this post.

Tom said...

I don't like towns or city's.. from a distance maybe, but up close no thank you...

lv2scpbk said...

I like the different colors in the first photo and the last one. The other two photos you took sure do tell a story. Great captures and I liked that you wrote some about it. 80% is alot of umemployment.

photowannabe said...

That is quite a statistic...80%. Very sad and the potential for violence must be great. I do like your photojournalism pictures.

Clueless in Boston said...

Great post. It's always enlightening to learn a little bit more about PNG. It might be better if the city remains cut off from the rest of the country, but I'm sure a road will one day be built. HWDB takes pretty good pictures:)

alicesg said...

Interesting photos and information about the city. I learnt so much from your blog on PNG. Thanks for sharing.

Steve Buser said...

That's a lot of cargo moving through all those boxes -- and lifting each with a crane like that is a slow process

Marcel said...

As always a very interesting post with great photos!

Anonymous said...

Hi Jules, have you considered uoloading any of your photo's to Google Earth. There are already a couple for Rabaul but not too many. POM looks a little bit better covered. looks like a useful tool for travelling etc especially the new 3d view for USA cities etc

M.Benaut said...

Shops and restaurants in the big smoke is a nice change, but your nick of the woods is just beautiful.
With a southern winter approaching, how nice it would be to live in your little piece of paradise.
Wanna house swap ?
(By the way; can you say how cold it gets in Rabaul ?)

Anonymous said...

I'm so glad I stumbled upon this website while googling 'rabaul'. I lived in Rabaul in the early 80s as a middle school student with my parents. I remember mangoe avenue so well. The theater, the shops, the toyota dealership on one corner along magoe avenue. The second floor auditorium beside the Luthern Church where Rabaul International Correspondence High School which I attended held classes.

Someday I'd like to come back, but for now, I thank this site and it's pictures!


Jules said...

Hi Ernie - so pleased to read your comments - a number of ex-Rabaul people pop in regularly to see what is happening. Welcome!!!

M B - house swapping sounds good but I would like to be here with you and Mme when you come!!! It can get quite cool here down to 22 degrees at times - 3 in the morning!!! - you may need a coat!!!!!

Hi Rod - Great idea - will have a look on Google Earth but I may have trouble as the phone lines make it impossible to usually download anything from that site but may be able to upload???

Dive - I live in HOPE!!!!

Kris & Quinto - PNG is resource rich but has very few manufacturing industries - everything is sent off shore and most things have to be imported including a lot of the food. So economically things aren't good and the country relies on Aid from Australia and other countries like Japan to balance the budget. Corruption is endemic and roads, health care etc just get worse every year.

There is no social security so people have to rely on the Wantok system which means your family and friends have to support you and vice versa you can ask them for support. As you can imagine it just doesn't work so many young people turn to drugs and crime in the big cities. It is such a fabulous place it is very depressing to see the local people struggling. Aids is also a new problem and PNG now has the fastest growing HIV numbers in the world.

George Townboy said...

Beautiful series of photos and great information about the city ... love it.

I had a neighbor that lived somewhere in PNG, some 30 odd years ago ... he was a lawyer attending Boston College Law School for an advanced degree. We had gin and tonic every afternoon! That's about all I can remember, lol. No names, no cities ... they were Australian though, he and his family.