We flew up to Vanimo, just on the PNG side of the border, in a Kodiak.
From there we travelled to the border by PMV (public motor vehicle).
There are lots of beautiful rivers which run under the road and out to the nearby sea.
The border itself can only be crossed on foot, but it was a painless process on both sides.
After clearing customs, we were collected by some of our colleagues who work on the Indonesian side.
The Indonesian side has a different feel to it, with lots of rice paddies near the road.
There was also a slight change of architecture!
But there were still familiar enough roadside markets.
However, we didn’t stop for lunch here, we went instead to Pizza Hut. Being roughly the same distance from us as mainland
probably our closest! A treat indeed (but don’t tell Trudie). Australia
The next day was a chance to relax and we drove down to the coast for a short hop round to a local beach.
The jetty we launched from, with our transport tied up along side. Looks like we’re in for a rough crossing!
The more traditional style of boat (though the outboard may not be totally historically authentic).
Some of the kids were a bit bored – ‘Do we have to go to the same beautiful beach with wonderful snorkelling again?’!
Eventually, I suppose, we had to get round to doing some work.
Their new hanger.
Out with the old – a Helio Courier waiting to be retired…
And in with the new – the Pilatus PC6.
Each evening, as we’d been working so hard, we rewarded ourselves with Magnum ice-creams from the local shop. Mmmm.
But it couldn’t all be hard work, and I got the opportunity to go kayaking on the nearby lake with a couple of the pilots; even if it did entail leaving at 5:15AM. Urrgh.
The boats were hand-made by the guy who took us – beautiful.
And if you’ve been working hard, there’s this appetising drink to refresh you…
Maybe not the name I would have gone with.
But don’t worry, buying it won’t break the bank, even if it might seem like it at first glance…
Who wants to be a millionaire?
Eventually it had to be over, though, I guess.
So we reversed our route back to Vanimo.
The Vanimo beach.
And flew back home.