Friday, 15 April 2011

Take your bush knife to school day

A bush knife, or machete, is a commonly used garden tool in PNG.  Bush knives can be used to prepare the ground for planting, cut back a tree, or crack open a coconut.  (Sadly, they are also frequently used in cases of domestic or tribal violence.  But this story is a happy one, so we will save that for another time.)


There is a primary school located just outside of the hospital station.  Many of our staff children attend the school.  Occasionally the students will spend a day working outside, keeping up the gardens around the grounds.  On garden days, you will see the kids in their blue school uniforms walking down the road with all sorts of things--spades (shovels), flower or plant cuttings, and of course... bush knives.  

The primary school recently received a donation of 50 computers.  Today there was a community event, a thank you for the gift.  This week the kids were helping to get things ready for the big day.

This is Lily, daughter of Esther (housekeeping) and Simon (maintenance), posing for a picture with her bush knife.

I couldn't resist taking a picture of this very handsome gardener and his spade--shiny black shoes and all!

"Toto, I have a feeling we're not in Kansas anymore."
~ Dorothy


  1. Do you know how old these kids are?

  2. I would guess that Lily is about 14 and the handsome gardener about 8.