UPDATES COMING SOON! 17/12/2013
Kapuna Hospital is hidden deep in the jungle swamps of Papua New Guinea. Clinging tenaciously to the banks of the crocodile-infested Wame River, a tributary of the mighty Purari River, Kapuna is the only hospital within paddling distance for 30,000 PNG locals.
Think Kapuna Hospital, and you at once think Doctor Lin Calvert, who for the last 53 years has been resident 'surgeon/gyneacologist/obstetrician/anaesthetist/paediatrician' and a number of other hard-to-spell and even-harder-to-do medical things...but if you're the only doctor in the house, you have to do, 'cos they're dead-if-you-don't...
Lin Calvert's half-life autobiography and commentary on the 70s revival in the Gulf Province, Let the Fire Burn, is now uploaded ready for downloading by any and all.
Any of you that have been to Kapuna Hospital in its 60+, we would love to hear from you and record any special memories (words and photos) of your time in the jungle.
In case you've ever wondered, Question: why Kapuna? Short for Takapuna, in Auckland? No. A random name plucked out of nowhere? No. The local word for hospital? No, but a little closer.
Answer ( from a usually reliable source): Before Pidgin English became the common language of PNG, the trade language was Police Motu (used, I presume, by the Police as they spread around the country under Australian governance). In Police Motu, a hospital is muramura gabuna (medicine place); so Kapuna is a slight variant of place in Police Motu.
And Kapuna is certainly a place; hard to get to, true, but a place well worth getting to. I used to frequent a 2nd hand bookshop called Hard to Find but Worth the Effort. If Kapuna hadn't been called Kapuna, it could have been called Pai'iri Ena'a Kani Miki, Aika Pai'iri Pokoio Ima Miki, which if I remember my Iai/Koriki means word-for-word Place to Go Hard Very but Place to Stay Good Very.
Hope you enjoy, and God Bless