Pidgin Audio

We’ve had a request to hear what Pidgin sounds like. So here it is. This is a recording of our friend, Hoax, talking about work he will be doing in his garden tomorrow. You’ll be able to notice how the language has a lot of English words (or English sounding words.) Most of the time…

Language Helpers

Meet our “official” language helpers: Hoax and Margaret.   They are married and have five daughters. Though we spend time talking with lots of different people in order to learn Pidgin, these two are our official language helpers. We meet with them twice a week for about 3 hours. On Tuesdays we go to their…

Stuff We Packed

We just got an email letting us know that all the stuff we shipped from America has arrived in Sydney and should be in Lae, PNG (a port city) at the end of October. After that, who knows–our neighbors had to wait over a month for their stuff to clear customs and make it to…

Mitupela Lainim Lo Tok Pisin*

We are full-time language learners now. We spend as much of our time talking with local people in the trade language (Pidgin) as we can. The rest of our “learning time,” we study, listen to our recordings and get ready for the next time we’ll talk with someone. We have a number of people who we meet with regularly to learn, but we also just walk around to find anyone willing to listen to our attempts. It’s an interesting, fun, challenging, humiliating experience.

*The two of us are learning to speak Pidgin

The Cost of Friendship

Here in Papua New Guinea one of the important aspects of the culture we are learning about is the role of “friendships.” I put the word in quotes because a PNGian would translate the word “wantok” into english as “friend,” but it would not accurately reflect the true meaning of the word.