There was an overwhelming response from 70s, 80s, and 90s kids of Lae City who responded to the short article about Lae of the past. Their personal accounts added to the richness of the experience. There are so many responses so I am publishing snippets from as many as I can. Thank you all! I hope we can, together, (and as much as I hate the Trump line) “make Lae great again!”
Ivan Hiob: “Owned my first Onitsuka Tiger, a Japanese sneakers popular back then, and my first fiberglass kite. Both were bought at Bali Merchants (now 8-6 Supermarket) which sold collectible comics and magazines and sports equipment amongst a host of big US clothing brands.”
Phil Senginawa: “Growing up in Unitech was the best part of my life I will never forget. We had the best BMX track. I had never seen in other PNG centers, Duncanson Hall (DH) was our cinema, we had kids parks with swings, slides and a fire truck. …I will never forget. And we never ran out of playing fields.
Tiffany Twivey-Nongorr: I grew up there too. Why the changes ? Well – it’s the inhabitants. I remember everyone I knew lived in house and not apartments and everyone I knew took a HUGE amount of are to make their own garden beautiful. Plenty of rain and sunshine made it a gardeners dream. There were even best garden competitions. Many of my parents friends were involved In The Botanical Gardens – fundraising, bringing in visiting botanist. People loved the city and treated it with love.
John Rosso: That was the Lae I grew up in. I now have the opportunity to try to bring Lae back to its glory days. It won’t be easy and I can’t perform miracles overnight but if we all worked together we can try to give our children the opportunity to grow up in a safe clean functioning city.
Robert Bangin: My very young parents left East New Britain and went to Lae to start a new life together prior to PNG Independence..
I was born in Lae 45 years ago and as a result and still consider it my spiritual home.
I even smile every time my passport details remind me of this fact when requested for formal IDENTITY records at International Customs check these days. Thanks again.
Francis Yapog: Trutru,em displa ol taim em mipla Eugene Yangom em mipla ol liklik mangi sawe raun lukim ol boys sawe challenge break-dance lo old Post-Office hapsait lo Town Police Station wantaim double cassette player with the beats of New Kids on The Block, MC Hammer etc…Ah sore, mipla ol Original pikini blo Lae Town stret!!
John Laskam: Just reading through your article really brought back memories of my childhood days. Lae was so peaceful and well structured set up. The manucipal authorities were very effective and efficient. Those days my friends and I would always look forward to the weekend because there were number of spots to hang out and have fun. The obvious ones are the cinemas. There were many specialty shops and toy shops that we usually frequent.
Anne Macca: I lived at the Telikom college for 6 years when I was a kid. My Dad was a trainer. They used to show movies at the mess hall on weekends and we’d buy ice blocks at the canteen. Thanks for sharing.
Willie Sapmai: I still can recall those good old days when I touched down at the newly built Nadzab airport tarmac way back around noon of February 1981 to commence training as a telephone technician at the the P&T college, now Telikom Training Centre. Those days, things in the shops were so cheap. At the same time the college was runned by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU). The food was great, we use to have full breakfast with cereals, big fat lunch and to finish it of with a three course meal dinner. On top of that we get an allowance of K60 to K70. Taxi services runned by Jumi Cabco was the only expensive means of travel for a fare of K5 from Lae town to the P&T college.