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Paul Oates

Apinun tru John,we seemed to have had similar aspirations in the cattle industry.

You should try my book 'Phascogales' about our efforts with Queensland Droughtmasters.

Best wishes.

You can find a review and more details of Paul's third book, 'Phascogales and Other Tales: A Queensland Tree Change', here: - KJ


Apinun Paul, reading your notes inspired me to make contact.

I remember meeting you in Wau when I was courting Sharon and now many years hence we produce tropical natural grass fed beef on the Atherton Tablelands, something we did in Central Province for 20 odd years.

But despite strong support from my colleagues, and friends in the RPNGC, we eventually got destroyed by the almost total lack of law and order.

Geoff Vaki, Andy Bawa, Paul van Stavren, Bruce Inch, Sam Inguba, David Tasion, Graham Inui and countless other loyal officers, NCOs and members did their best to maintain the rule of law we maintained before, during and for a diminishing number of years post Independence.

Like many of us I believe I have two homelands, but after 43 years service I now reside in the country of my birth, and think of the country of my heart!

Happy New Year.

Paul Oates

Thanks for your comments Bob. When Phil prodded me into publishing some of my unpacked memories I expected a few 'ho hums' and not a lot else.

I'm delighted to be able to entertain someone else with some reflections from a half century ago that still seem like yesterday.

Before our fraternity completely disappears, my hope is that both the PNG people and Australians can get to know each other better and form a strong relationship based on our shared history.

We are after all, next door neighbours sharing an increasingly troubled world.

Bob Petras

Paul, what a memory your book has been. I too was in Lae in that same period. I worked at the National Bank of Australasia Limited from September 1971 until I returned just under two years later to Sydney, Australia.

The National Bank had just built a new Branch in Lae that I had the opportunity to move into shortly after I arrived.

One of my very close friends in Lae, was a kiap by the name of John Bradbury who worked at the Government Administration Office there. John was also a pilot and I flew with him a number of times out of Lae.

I have long left Australia, travelling to North America in September 1973 and then to Canada. 48 years later I am still in Canada however we did return to Australia in November 2017 for a remarkable 'home reunion'. Some of those names mentioned I remember as many of the places mentioned.

While in PNG I flew up to Ambunti in the Sepik for a week and then was in Mount Hagen and many times to the SIL Base at Ukarumpa.

Wonderful to read your delightful book.

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