Another one bites the dust

Saturday, August 4, 2012

The Aviat Club is now smoldering – another building in Lae down.  It seemed odd* that at 4:50 am this morning there were so many people on the street.  As we ran past an hour later it finally became apparent why all these people are out…Apparently the army got in a fight with the bouncers and came back to burn down the building (unfortunately for them they were in the middle of renovations – guess they’ll be starting over from scratch!).  Don’t mess with the army!

The count of buildings burned down since I’ve been here:  ANZ, a shop in Eriku, a shop near the market, one out at Ramu, a house (which was next to the fire station but somehow took the fire trucks a LONG time to get there), BOC Gases a few months ago (fortunately some very dedicated guys went and fought that one so the fire did not make it to the gas tanks in their adjacent building or this list would be a LOT longer…)   and too many houses in the surrounding settlements and villages to list, including 3 last weekend adjacent to my haus meri’s house – which is a whole other story…

On Tuesday I ask how her weekend was and she goes, ‘oh, oh em no gupla.’  This is surprising as she is usually very cheerful.  She tells me that in her settlement a woman had her head cut off (she emphasizes by drawing a line against her throat) and arms cut, there were fights between a man and a woman who were ‘sparked’ (a.k.a. drunk), and three houses next to her were burned down (which she was very concerned might spread to her place).  I couldn’t really grasp if the fighting was caused by the decapitation or if the decapitation caused the other problems but horrible none-the-less.

*Is it more odd that I am up that early???  Is it odd that, that’s what odd – not the above mentioned decapitation?**

The runs that initially started off at 5:30 and 6 are now starting at 5 am – and the crazy dedicated runners are now running 3 laps around town (~25 km)…I ran 1 1/2 laps (13.4 km) – probably the longest I’ve ever run.

**There is a lot of violent crime here but I prefer not to focus on it, it’s sad for sure, but there are far too many positives that should far out weigh the negatives, so much potential.


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