Luluai Pfun and his family

While Allison had been in the gardens with Bossboy Gul's wives, Marek had spent the day with Luluai Pfun.

Kunai grass that was needed to mend a leaking roof had to be gathered from the drier summit area of the mountain.

046-18: Luluai Pfun bundles kunai grass to mend a roof.

After Pfun cut and bundled the grass, Marek helped him carry the bundles down to Gunts.

044-11: Marek pauses on the way down to chat with women in the grove outside Gunts Yard.

046-36: Luluai Pfun preparing firewood.

Later, they went to another part of the forest to collect firewood.

The Kiap Road between Gunts and Tababe was also a main route from higher gardens and forests down toward the Fungai hamlets of Gunts and Tenegump.

047-00: Luluai Pfun on the Kiap Road with the wood he has collected.

Pfun and his wife, Komba, had five children ranging in age from their adolescent daughter, Pint', to their baby son, Mbuk. In between were two brothers - Mbana and Dimbonk - and the little sister, Arum.

Mbana had also been out collecting firewood and arrived back in Komba's yard shortly after Pfun and Marek.

We often heard parents scolding boys for neglecting to bring their share of the firewood. Mbana, like all men, carried the load slung over his shoulder.

047-12: Mbana climbs over the fence into Komba's yard with his load of firewood.

047-04: Pint' prepares vegetables for steaming. 047-34: Mbana eats hot roasted pitpit fresh off the fire inside his mother's house. 047-36: Pint' feeds her little brother, Mbuk, with pieces of sweet potato.

047-13: Komba sorts leaves onto two bark "platters" in preparation for steaming them in bamboo tubes over her fire.

047-27: Pfun carefully unpacks a bit of salt he has stored in a safe place. Inside the shadow of the house, Komba is stuffing the leaves into the bamboo tubes.

We were fascinated by Pfun's aluminum saucepan. Such saucepans could be bought at the trade stores in Simbai for the money men earned carrying our cargo or mail. Each item was usually adapted by the owner to make it more useable. Pfun had discovered that a long handle was convenient on a saucepan and he had requested Marek to give him a length of wire from the supply we had brought in to use in house construction. Since our houses were mainly fastened together with local lianas — gaua — the wire was not much use to us, so Marek cut a number of "saucepan handles" and gave them away as presents.

047-18: Luluai Pfun plays with his son, Mbuk, while waiting for the steamed greens to be cooked.

Completed on April 20, 2011


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