Cletus Inap, the pukpuk man from Angoram

Cletus Inap

Papua New Guinea is a fascinating country.

Two weeks ago,  after suffering symptoms of a writers block, I went out for a walk. Nowhere spectacular…just around one block of top town in Lae.  

In front  the pharmacies,  I met Cletus Inap from Angoram in East Sepik.    He had  in his hands, a small pukpuk.   Cletus is a typical Sepik wara guy. Good sense of humor, proud of his heritage and straight shooter.


So what was he doing with the  young pukpuk in the middle of Lae city?  Cletus  said he was trying to sell it. But so  far he had not  been successful.  


Earlier, he wasn’t able to sell the crocs at the 8 mile pukpuk farm because  the people there wanted salt water crocs only.


The pictures were good. So what the heck… I recorded him on my phone.   Cletus told me  the pukpuks had been with him for about a year.  A year.


How did he bring them to Lae?   He laughed.


“Mi putim ol lo bag,” he said.  “Mi tokim ol yupla noken sigaut!”

(I put them in a bag and I got on a plane. I told them, don’t make any noise)


But that’s not all.   I found out Cletus  was also looking after bigger crocs. I didn’t want to ask where.   The   bigger crocs had escaped during two weeks of heavy rain in Lae City.


I asked  him what he was going to do if  the crocs were not sold.   He grinned and as if trying not to let the pukpuks hear him,  he made  a gesture… no words…   that he would eat them.


For those swimming in the Bumbu River (and I’m assuming it’s the Bumbu River) be on the lookout for two pukpuks from Angoram on the loose.  They know Cletus Inap.

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