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Today's quote:

Thursday, November 3, 2022

We only live once, but we can live in such a way that at the end of the journey, we will feel as though we have lived a hundred lives.

Kieta in the 70s


If the rain, the mud, the dust, the heat, and the sheer boredom didn't get you down, it was the unrelenting routine of working ten hours a day six days a week, building the largest copper mine in the world on the tropical island of Bougainville. [for more, click here]

Was it any wonder we dreamt of escaping to Kieta for a scent of the big wide world beyond? Once we had, by hook or by crook, hitched a ride, our first stop was the waterfront shop of Greens, a veritable Aladdin's cave of desirable merchandise, from t-shirts to bilum bags to postcards depicting Highland 'meris' suckling their babies on one side and a pig on the other. Then it was time for liquid refreshments at the Kieta Hotel, or in the unpretentious yacht club, and, much later, on Arovo Island.

Kieta Yacht Club


Then, Kieta had a population of just over a thousand. There were thirteen trade stores, a supermarket, cinema shows at the Kieta Club and the nearby high school, two hotels (including the newly opened Davara at Toniva), a deepwater harbour, three banks and enough traffic to cause city-style congestion.


Kieta today


What's left of it today? Nothing! Except for the memories which will stay alive for as long as we stay alive! You know, I'd rather look back on life and say, "I can't believe I did all that" instead of "If only I had".


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