Thank you for a well-written, beautifully illustrated, informative post on East New-Brittain. I was working as a surgical locum at Nonga Base Hospital on the outskirts of Rabaul when Jack Emmanuele was killed, after spending three years as a surgeon at Mount Hagen in the Western Highlands of Papua-New Guinea. Your account brought back many memories for us both.
It was 40 years since I had been to Rabaul on the Gazelle Peninsula of East New Britain, Papua New Guinea. Then I was a very young journalist, not long married with 2 small babies, one of whom I took with me. We went for a month or so to visit his father who was one of a large number of Sydney barristers briefed by the Australian government to appear for the 12 Tolai men accused of murdering the white District Commissioner, Jack Emanuel, over a land dispute. But that’s another story some of which I wrote for the now defunct Bulletin magazine in 1972. This week I went back to visit a friend volunteering in aid work and to enjoy the annual Mask Festival.
Papua New Guinea was my first overseas experience. I still remember the exotic musty smell infused with frangipani and some spice that assailed me together…
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