Archive for category: social reflections

Consumed by fire: when all you have goes up in flames

20 Mar
March 20, 2017

Some say the fire started in a sangoma’s house. Others say it was started by a drunk man who fell asleep, but nobody knows for sure. All we do know is that the fire was ruthless; scorching, angry flames leaping from one corrugated iron shack to the next and destroying everything in its path. Within a matter of hours, four people had died, 4,500 homes were destroyed and 15,000 people were left homeless and destitute. Read more →

Finding inner beauty and celebrating diversity

12 Jul
July 12, 2016

One of the things I love about New York City is that you can literally walk into incredible events taking place right on the street. The other day as I was waking back from the Amish Market (the best place in the city to get wholesome, delicious food) I noticed a crowd at Dag Hammarskjold Plaza on 47th Street, so I went to take a look. Read more →

Behind Hout Bay’s quest for answers from a smelly factory

31 Aug
August 31, 2015

The first time I went to Hout Bay I instantly knew I wanted to live there. There was something about the rich diversity of colourful characters, the fishing village heritage and the spectacular natural environment that captured it all. Read more →

From the gravesite to the stage

19 May
May 19, 2014

Nori Vagi Brash speaks about her life as a Papua New Guinean poet, writer, and social activist

You probably haven’t heard of Nora Vagi Brash, and you might need a map to locate Papua New Guinea. But tucked away in this exotic island of the South Pacific, Nora is respected as one of the most outstanding playwrights and poets in the region, and the only female playwright published in the country.  Read more →

going local at malaoro market

14 Apr
April 14, 2014

Despite the fact that PNG is an extraordinarily lush country, good quality local fruit and vegetables are hard to come by in Port Moresby. Most of us shop at supermarkets where a wide variety of beautiful, but expensive, imported vegetables can be found.

A more exciting shopping experience, however, can be found at Malaoro Market, a fresh fruit and vegetable market located at Gavamani Road. The aisles are a little rougher than those in the air-conditioned supermarkets, but the abundance of staple vegetables is just as good, the prices reasonable, and the colours and experience worth every minute. Produce ranges from lettuce, to carrots, tomatoes, onions, garlic, and corn, as well as an array of fruits including bananas, pineapples, and watermelon. There is also a seafood section, where fresh fish and crabs are in abundance. Read more →

a place to call home: bringing hope to the children of hangberg

13 Mar
March 13, 2014

At five in the afternoon, more than 100 children sit amongst the playground of Little Angels, waiting to be fed. Within minutes, bowls of steaming and nutritious stew are delivered into their eager little hands, accompanied with a slice of bread and a cup of juice, and a feeding frenzy begins. For many of the children, most of whom are under the age of six years old, this is their one guaranteed meal for the day, and as the bowls are licked clean, their tummies full and their faces smiling, they run off to play with their friends. Read more →

the sounds of community

06 Mar
March 6, 2014

One of the things I love about my house is that it’s in the heart of the community. In Harbour Heights, alongside the predominantly coloured area of Hangberg, we are perched on the guarding mountain known as the Sentinel, overlooking the working harbour of Hout Bay. All within walking distance from my front door, there is a local high school and primary school, a health centre, a community development and recreation centre, a library, a sports field, two bus stops, a mosque and two churches.  Read more →

market wash day

03 May
May 3, 2013

august 2010

Once a month there is a craft market at the Moresby Arts Theatre. It is a beautiful collection of carvings, culture, colour and diversity where people share their stories and their wares. Most people will go for the morning, after the traders have set up and long before they leave. I doubt that many people think about who these traders are, what their lives are like or where they come from. They are just simply there, as much a part of the landscape as the wide drooping trees and the dusty stones on the path. Read more →

humbling moments

03 May
May 3, 2013

Today I went to buy chocolate, a regular occurrence in my life. While waiting to pay, a young boy of about 7 years joined the line. I smiled and motioned he stand in front of me; all he had was a small packet of juice mix. He glanced at me and took his place. He was filthy. His feet were covered in the grime of what could only be his home, or the street he lived on. His yellow shirt so dirty it was brown. His shorts ripped, his hair dusty and matted. But what struck me were his eyes, these wide eyes that held in them a certain knowing, an expression of having seen and been through too much. He looked at me with trepidation and suspicion, and a small bit of wonderment. I was overcome with guilt when he saw the two chocolate bars in my hands. Read more →