It could only happen in Papua New Guinea.
Frisbee was one of the first ‘people’ I met the day I arrived in the small coastal town of Vanimo, in Sandaun – Papua New Guinea’s remote West Sepik Province. She belonged to Jim, the coordinator of the development project I would work on for the next five years.
At work, she usually sat quietly under the desk in Jim’s office. No one was better informed on current affairs than Frisbee.
Some of the pilots were in her fan club and let her travel behind Jim’s feet on short flights to isolated stations in Sandaun.
In the photo above, Frisbee was especially impatient for take-off because we were going with some friends for a weekend’s snorkeling to Wuvulu, one of Papua New Guinea’s outlying islands to the east.
Wuvulu is famous for coconut crabs, and everywhere offered fresh and intriguing smells for Frisbee to track down. But she was wary of those claws.
I’ll tell you more about Wuvulu, and it’s tiny neighbour, Aua, another time.
I took Frisbee out for regular evening romps along the beach in Vanimo – it was the ideal way to recover from a stressful day working in scorching temperatures and high humidity. Papua New Guinea is only a couple of degrees south of the equator.
Jim left Frisbee with me when his contract ended, and she came to sit on the steps of my house, keeping an eye on the neighbourhood. Everyone loved her.
She was a wonderful companion, even if, a couple of times, she caused me angst and heartbreak … but that’s all Inside the Crocodile: The Papua New Guinea Journals