Wednesday, November 21, 2007
From Ana: About Wipim
We live in Wipim Station in the Western Province of Papua New Guinea. Wipim is a small inland community made up of mainly government workers. There is an elementary school, a health center, and a newly arrived treasury office. That is it. There aren't any stores, no post office, no police station, no telephones, no transportation services, etc. It is a difficult picture to paint for those who have never been here. The closest place to "civilization" as you would understand is Daru Island which is about 60 miles away via airplane. However, the main airline company that serviced our small community has stopped all flights to our area. Because we are missionaries, we are usually able to book flights with Mission Aviation Fellowship to travel to Daru where we can buy supplies or else catch a larger airplane to the capital city. Otherwise, Jason travels by dirt (or mud) road to a river where he pays a dinghy to then take him to Daru. Our only personal mode of transportation is on our tractor which takes him four hours to the river if the road is dry. Six months out of the year the road is nearly impassable because of the rain and mud so we try to bring in as many supplies as we will need during the dry season. Sometimes he is able to catch a ride on a government vehicle which then only takes one and a half hours to the river if all goes well. From the river to Daru via dinghy is another two or three hours depending on the size of the boat engine.