Category Archives: About Me

Joycelin K Leahy Biography

New Artwork – Swimming Together


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Swimming Together series – JLeahy©

Pencil and Ink drawing by JLeahy ©

I joined the zazzle.com through a blogger friend Tibaraphoto and tried to set up a website to sell my art. I am not a technology-clued person, and while I love the convenience of it, technology often drives me crazy. In Papua New Guinea pidgin we say, mi foul ya! which means, I am fouled. I am also not good with reading ten million instructions in several layers. I like instructions to be simple.

Anyway, you may have seen a link on my blog : Tribalmysticart on the left side bar and tried to click it several times, and it did not take you anywhere. That’s because it is only a counter for visitors. I have NOT uploaded any art nor given you a link yet. On Zazzle, I got confused about how to upload, then the commissions and so on. I am almost ready to build that store.

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Swimming Together series – JLeahy©

Tribalmysticart counter recorded 6,700 plus clicks. To those people who clicked, I apologise. My art will come soon. Please be patient.  I am sharing some of the new artwork that will go on Zazzle. Please wish me luck and stay tune. If you are interested in any of these work, let me know.

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Swimming Together series – JLeahy©

Scatterings of Blood River


Mondays Finish the Story by Barbara W. Beacham

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The Kingdom Behind the Fog – Photo by Barbara W. Beacham

Scatterings of Blood River ©JLeahy Memoirs

Once upon a time in a land far, far away, beyond the blue fog of Torrest Straits lived many tribes in Papua New Guinea. Amongst them, a fierce warrior named Katham led the Ahe people.

Seeking fertile land Katham attacked Tikeleng, Apo and Aluki tribes for the Lahe coastline. The early 1900s battle took place near a large river. Positioned in the thick tropical forest Katham and his warriors fought till his last coastal enemy fell. Katham and two ardent followers returned inland. They crossed the river, which they named Bu-dac, meaning Blood River, because it was red and filled with floating bodies. The three heard loud splashing. Katham approached the shallow bank cautiously thinking an injured enemy was still alive.

To his astonishment, he found a toddler struggling for air and Katham picked up and hugged the baby boy. The baby threw up water and cried. Without other survivors, Katham returned home, named and raised the toddler as his son.

Based on our (Ahe people’s) history as told by my grandmother, Geyamlamuo Poaluawe Baim. Budac remains a river where our people wash daily. The toddler’s three generations are still part of our family. Our village Wagang remains in the position Katham fought for.  Thank you Barbara for a perfect picture to inspire my oral history.

A Rope Ambush


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Tinang and I in 2006, Wagang Village, PNG.

My grandmother Geyamlamuo Poaluawe Baim (Geyam) was born on 4/4/1919. She died in 2008 while I was away in Vietnam on a university field trip. Like many others she raised, I called her Tinang which means mother. I miss her so much even though I know, she is always with me.

A Rope Ambush – Short Story (JLeahy Memoirs ©)

Dew glistened on blades and seed pockets as we walked through the thick wet grass. My sun-tanned legs were studded in pale green grass seeds. I wore my brown shorts and an old white T-shirt,  ripped on the shoulders with pin holes all over. It was cooler and easier to work in. I was turning eight and tall.

“Jesus loves me this I know, for the bible tells me so”, I sang quietly as grandma and I headed for our garden. Tinang sang with me and then stopped. The morning was cool and the humidity took its time to arrive. I tried pushing the grass apart with a stick before stepping into the track so I would not step on toads, snakes or get wet.  My feet were covered in mud. If we did not go to the main market in Lae town, Papua New Guinea on Saturdays, I would be out fishing or gardening with Tinang. I was glad Tinang’s elephantiasis leg did not swell up today and I knew even if her foot bothered her, she would have never mentioned it.

We had left the main road to Wagang village and were crossing the wet over-grown track to our old garden. The old and new gardens were side by side. We needed to pick up some young banana shoots, tapioca sticks and kaukau (sweet potato) leaves for the new garden. It was almost 8am. I knew the time because the ambulance had come to pick up my uncle for work at 7am and we had walked an hour from the village. We stopped to visit my aunt; otherwise it would have taken us half hour to 45 minutes. Our garden was further away than other gardens.

“Ampom Mamang!” grandma whispered suddenly.

Tinang 2006
Tinang at her home in Lae 2006.

That was a very quiet order, telling me to stop singing.

Over the birds’ songs and the wind rustling the leaves, I could hear voices and wood chopping.

“They are close” grandma said.

“Who were they?” “What were they chopping on our land?” I needed clarity but grandma’s eyes indicated – now was not the time.

We both stood still and listened. We could not see anyone yet. I knew the noisemakers were not our villagers. They spoke a different language and sometimes in conversation, they would speak pidgin. This meant, “they” were outsiders, most likely the squatter settlers. We called them Kaii. This word means foreigners. Tinang and I had no idea how many they were.

Tinang signed that we would take a short cut through the trees and hide in the bushes near our coconut trees. The trees were planted as a landmark close to the boundary of the Martin Luther Seminary. This spot had some vines and thick undergrowth. Beyond the seminary, our tribal land was occupied by hundreds of illegal squatter settlers. They came from Morobe Province and the highlands of Papua New Guinea. Many settlers had lived there for up to three generations and claimed the land as theirs. Often, there were fights between villagers and the settlers.

As grandma and I got closer, the sound of chopping became distinct. People were talking and laughing. They joked and laughed as they went about their business.

Through the thick undergrowth and heavily entwined creepers, we counted seven adult male. Three had ‘weapons’ – two knives and one axe. Grandma and I only had one bush knife. I looked at her and then I watched the others break the dry firewood and stacked them on bush vines – prepared to be tied into a bundle.

Tinang made eyes to be quiet and move quickly. She was almost sixty, but she could move quickly even with her bad leg. She cut a long creeper and removed all the leaves. It was strong and several metres long. Then grandma cut the second one and did the same thing.

Two of the men started playing and chased each other and one jumped almost into our secret hiding place under the vines. I froze. The man fell two metres away, got up and ran and playfully pushed his friend over.

His friend tripped over some Hessian bags and fell. It was the first time I noticed the old brown bags were filled with food. We called these bags “copra bags” because our people sold their copra in the bags. I counted seven bags and four bundles of bananas. They could not get anymore bananas because I knew from last week, only four were ready to harvest. They did take a lot of sweet potatoes and tapioca. They also had taros that I could see from the open bags. They men harvested our gardens for themselves and now to top it off, they helped themselves to our firewood. They must have begun this thieving trip very early this morning I thought and I felt very angry.

I looked at grandma and she was very busy tying ropes in different parts of the bush – it was like, she was setting up a rope trap. I wondered how we would catch these grown men in our rope traps. I was afraid.

I lifted my chin in a question to grandma and made eyes at the ropes. She signalled me to wait and see. Once she tied the two creepers on all the small Aducbo trees, she brought their ends to one spot and told me to stand there and get ready to pull. I grabbed the robes and took my position. She worked under the vines and tied all the trunks of small trees in a semicircle.

Tinang cut two more strong thick vines and quietly under the cover of the vines, she creeped around to the opposite of the spot where I was. She winked at me and smiled. I knew she was up to something and although I was afraid of the men, I was confident she had a good plan.

After she tied the ropes at her side, grandma returned to me and asked.

“Are you afraid?”

“No Tinang” I said and smiled at her.

She hugged me. Then she whispered in my ear that she will give me a queue when she starts yelling abuses – I must, in my loudest and scariest voice scream and be very abusive as well and pull the two ropes at the same time.

The words I was to scream out were; ”What are you doing? What are you doing on my land?” “We will kill you, we will get you! We are coming for you!”

Grandma returned to her position and she stared hard at me and nodded, I nodded back and she started pulling the trees and screaming abuses. All the trees became alive in a semi-circle. I was surprised.

Caught off guard too, the men ran in my direction and I started doing the same thing. The ropes yanked the small trees – making noise and in an ambush, leaving only two escape routes. One gap led back to the garden and one led to the opening facing the Martin Luther seminary. Fleeing back in the direction to the garden, the men realised their mistake, turned and ran to the seminary. Tinang and I kept screaming and shaking pulling the trees and bushes until we were sure the thieves were gone. Then we hugged and laughed until we cried.

We inspected and confirmed the bags of food were harvested from our gardens. The thieves also left their two bush-knives and an axe. There were some dirty ripped smelly shirts, which we threw into the trees to hang as flags to celebrate our successful ambush.

Together, grandma and I carried the bags to new hiding places. Then we took the axe and bush knives and went to get my uncles to help carry our harvest home.

Phenomenal Woman


Happy International Women’s Day!

To celebrate us, the women of the world today (March 8th), I share words of  a great poet, Maya Angelou. I would like to pay tribute to the phenomenal women (pictured below) that raised me, and whose blood flow in my vein.

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From left to right, Mama De-ec, Tinang and Mama (Freda). My aunt, grandma and mum. Guess who is in the bilum…

Phenomenal Woman

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I’m telling lies.
I say,
It’s in the reach of my arms
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

I walk into a room
Just as cool as you please,
And to a man,
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me,
A hive of honey bees.
I say,
It’s the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my teeth,
The swing in my waist,
And the joy in my feet.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

Men themselves have wondered
What they see in me.
They try so much
But they can’t touch
My inner mystery.
When I try to show them
They say they still can’t see.
I say,
It’s in the arch of my back,
The sun of my smile,
The ride of my breasts,
The grace of my style.
I’m a woman

Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

Now you understand
Just why my head’s not bowed.
I don’t shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing
It ought to make you proud.
I say,
It’s in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,
the palm of my hand,
The need of my care,
‘Cause I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.
Maya Angelou

A Very Inspiring Blogger Award


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Over two weeks ago, I was very honoured to be nominated by Kathleen from KBailey373 blog for A Very Inspiring Blogger Award. I am very grateful to accept this award from Kathleen who has only been following my blog for a month. At the end of last year I was also nominated by Steve from Life in Russia for this award, but unfortunately, I had too much on and was ill, and did not attend to the requirements of the award. To Kathleen and Steve – a sincere thanks for finding something to inspire you from my blog. It means a lot to me. I have linked both blogs so you can visit and enjoy stories in KBailey373 and Life in Russia.

Blogging is fun, but not often easy. It is hard to know what appeals to readers.  After a year of blogging, I am slowly getting the idea of what not to post. Unfortunately some of the “not to post” are what I believe in, for example, the climate exchange issues.  Thank you for continuing to read and supporting this blog despite your preferences. Thank you for pointing out my errors, I like that.

On WordPress, I have come to treasure the work of many fellow bloggers. I told a friend yesterday that I have some great my readers and bloggers who have now become friends. This friendship inspires me to write or posts something good in each posts. I may not have pleased every reader in every post, but I try my best. I have learnt more from others in the blogging  community. WordPress has a large community of amazing people with interesting stories. I am a student of life and each time I come to blog world, I get very excited. I know I will learn something new. Thank you very much friends for inspiring me too in your content, comments and readership.

To meet the requirement of the award, I must;

  1. Display the award on your blog.

  2. Link back to the person who nominated you.

  3. State 7 things about yourself.

  4. Nominate 15 bloggers, link to them, and notify them about their nominations.

Seven things about me

  1. I almost drowned at the age of 10 during a fishing trip. It was in a flooded Busu, one of the fastest flowing river, several kilometres from our village (in Lae, PNG). My uncle flung the fishing net into the river,  caught me and pulled me up. (I am a good swimmer by the way).

  2. I have lived in Brisbane, Australia for 10 years. Where we live used to be a pineapple plantation and there is an 18th century cemetery behind us, separated by my neighbour’s house.

  3. When I was in Year 10, in high school, I was nominated to represent our school and compete in a national high school speech competition. It was sponsored by the Lions Club, (a charity and youth advocate). I gave a speech about the History of Lae Town, my town and how my people first came to settle on that land. I won some cash and $500 worth of books for my high school, the Busu Provincial High School. (It doesn’t sound like much now, but it was a lot then – 1980).

  4. I had straight blonde hair when I was a child. The more my grandmother cut my hair (so it would be an afro like hers) my hair curled. Now I have large dark curls.

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My crazy hair.
  1. Fish is my favourite food.

  2. I love birds and can watch them for hours.

  3. I was told by two doctors I was having a baby girl before I had my second son, now 16. We named ‘her’ Nisha until at birth. He had no name for two days. He became Christopher Eric Harris on the third day.

……………………..

Here are come of the blogs that inspire me for various reasons, mostly personally. They are not in any particular order of preference. I enjoy reading these blogs because of their rich and in-depth content and the each writer’s dedication and enthusiasm in sharing, exchange and helping others. Sorry if I did not list you here, I  can only list 15.

The Blogs that Inspired Me 

The Story Reading Ape

Life In Russia

Millie Thom

After Midnight: A Christian Bipolar

Publishing Insights

A Writers Path

A Refugee’s journey – Vietnam to Australia

Pmsspeak Blog

Nomzi Kumalo

Crime Fiction Writer Sue Colletta

When Women Inspire

Broadblogs

How the Cookie Crumbles

gordoneaglesham

O at the Edges

The Versatile Blogger Award


The Versatile Blogger Award

Versatile Blogger Award

I have been blogging for one year. It was my first blogging birthday today, and I know this because WordPress told me so. Unknowingly, I was also nominated for my fourth blogging award and this time, it was for the Versatile Blogger Award. I was nominated by a versatile blogger herself, the talented and gorgeous Lauren Green. Thank you so much for the nomination Lauren! I am deeply moved that my blog appeals to you and I appreciate the acknowledgment.

The things I like about  Lauren’s blog are not only her talents and her creativity, but her openness in conversation, which shows through what she discusses on her blog posts.  I immensely enjoyed a recent post which she tales about how she wanted people to remember her, when she had passes on. A very interesting post. Thank you for you nomination Lauren!

I guess I could say that I enjoy being a ‘versatile blogger’ because I can blog about anything, person, object or place, even when my focus is about my culture. My greatest blogging pleasure is in finding a story which I think my readers will enjoy.

The Versatile Blogging Award rules are as follows:

  1. Show the award on your blog.

  2. Thank the person who nominated you.

  3. Share seven facts about yourself.

  4. Nominate 15 blogs (I do read and follow more..)

  5. Link your nominee’s blogs & let them know. You can click on each one mentioned to get to their blogs.

So my seven facts are:

  1. I speak Bukawac as my first language and speak two other languages from Papua New Guinea fluently apart from English, with a little French, Spanish, Cantonese.

  2. My favourite genre of music is World Music. My goal is to go to an international world music festival in the next two years.

  3. I have two sons, 16 and 19 who are amazing people.

  4. I love art, culture and heritage. I am passionate about the Melanesian culture, which I grew up in. I am very lucky and proud to be able to maintain my culture.

  5. I am a Jack of Many Trades and master of most. I am honestly not bragging. When I do something or create something, I can only stop when I have truly mastered it. I have been blamed for being obsessive and I know it works against me sometimes, but I love ‘conquering’ whatever I have set out to do. Isn’t that what life is about?

  6. I have a Bird Of Paradise tattoo on my back. It was a swallow to begin with. The Bird of Paradise is the national pride of Papua New Guinea. The reason I have this tattoo was because, I got sick and tired of being hassled for tattoos in Bali during a trip. One day, I sat down at the shop and said: “DO IT!”. The  tattooist was shocked. I showed him a shallow, and told him, “that’s what I want, do it now before I change my mind.” The process hurt like hell as he carved through my flesh. I had to ask for a Gin and tonic or a Scotch to help me through the pain. He thought I had joked so he and his friends laughed and brought me a bottle of coke. The coke did not help, and  I don’t drink coke anyway. After two more hours of flesh-carving, he brought a mirror and the Swallow looked like a Bird of Paradise. I was raw and sore but surprised and delighted. I asked him to extend the tail and fixed the wings. It was too late to turn back. The tattoo became the bird I truly wanted, so I guess it was meant to be.

  7. I love being on my own. It helps me create. I enjoy the sound of the birds and I love playing my classical music loudly in the Australian bush. When I get bored with this music, I change it to  World Music, mostly African and South American music and I dance.

I also find that with my time alone, nature and meditation, I can focus and ground myself. Then, I am empowered to do the things I love the most.

My 15 nominations are:

Alex M Zoltai

MillieThom

Patrick Jones

Altitude of Art

Mamamaitri

A storyteller’s Abode

Pmespeak’s Blog

Sylvie G

Christie Birmingham

MyTwoSentences

L.T.Garvin

generaliregi

Pixelated Lifestyle

Love Letters to Spam

Story Shucker

Thanks Laura again for the nomination!

The Sisterhood of World Bloggers Award


World Sisterhood Blogger Award

I want to sincerely thank MillieThom for nominating my blog, Tribalmystic, for, The Sisterhood of World Blogger Award. Millie is the author of Shadow of The Ravens. Millie makes history sound like hot romance. She writes about various subjects with many fascinating historical content, and that’s why I enjoy her blog.

Once again, the show of kindness is deeply touching. Thank you Millie, fellow bloggers, friends and readers for supporting this blog.

The Sisterhood of World Bloggers Award

Five rules to follow:

  1. Thank the blogger who nominated you, linking back to their site.

  2. Put the Award logo on your blog.

  3. Answer the ten questions sent to you.

  4. Make up ten new questions for your nominees to answer.

  5. Nominate seven blogs.

Ten Answers About Me

1. What do you like best about blogging?

I love the writing or storytelling in blogging. This becomes more valuable with the responses I get from the readers and respect from the blogging community. I also love reading and learning from other writers/bloggers. I am driven to seek new or interesting stories for my readers. These stories can be  humanitarian news, environment and nature stories, inspiring human stories or stories about beautiful things.

I enjoy writing fiction, but on this blog, most of my stories are about life. I love writing about my culture and heritage and that helps maintain my sense of identity. I also understand the greater world we live in, therefore, I cannot ignore the realities of cruelty and poverty; what we humans do to one another. As a victim of violence myself, I want to see an ending to violence against women, children and the helpless – so I write about these topics. When I feel something is not right when I am reading an article, I share the post or write about it too. My passion goes beyond mankind. It includes other living things in the ocean and all nature. Blogging about the real and the living is the least I can do. Many risk their lives every day to fight for what is right, or to save other lives. I can only do it with my keyboard and posts on this blog, from the safety and comforts of my home.

2. If you could visit any place in the world, where would that place be and why?

I would like to go to Zanzibar, Africa one day. I would learn to dance like the Zanzibar women. Sounds crazy? Well, in 1998, I was in World Festival for Island Cultures in Cheju Island, Korea. I was pregnant with my second son. In a very rhythmic  performance, I saw large women from Zanzibar dancing at the festival like I had never seen before. They were big and heavy but so light on their feet and movements. It was incredible. I come from the islands and we dance, but not like this. From that day, I thought, I would like to go there and learn to dance like that. I am sure, the music ran through these women like their own blood. I tried to learn while on Cheju but my stomach was in the way. This trip is on my bucket list.

3. If you could change one thing about your life, what would it be?

I would like to change my pace of doing things – from fast to slow. I feel sometimes that I need to slow down and relax. I do not sleep enough. Writing is helping me to slow down, sit and think more than I have ever done in my life.

4. List 3 things that you are proud of doing / having done.

  1. Being a mother.

  2. Standing up for Women’s Rights.

  3. Being a Climate Change activist

5. What was your favourite subject at school, and why did it appeal so much?

I have never had one particular subject appeal to me – I loved many. I really enjoyed Maths and History apart from Arts, Philosophy and Literature. I loved problem solving and satisfying my curiosity. I enjoy old stories and understanding meaning of life. Social science and Geography were fun too. I could be in nature and interact with insects, animals and also people.

6. Is there any particular environmental issue that causes you concern?

What deeply concerns me is Climate Change and sea level rise in small Pacific Island nations, less than two metres above sea level. These islands will be lost soon. I would like the developed countries to lend their ears to hear us. Help us work together for a better planet for our future generation. It is not only about us sinking. We only have Earth to live on. Our earth deserves better treatment. In Australia, Prime Minister, Tony Abbott announced last week, his proudest and best decision he made was to reverse the climate policy. Two days ago, he employed a climate skeptic. The ignorance and denial of developed countries such as Australia is shameful.

7. What is your favourite childhood memory?

Being in the swamp, catching fish with my grandmother was what we did daily, for our food. One day, my grandma and I went to town with almost $5. She made this money from selling betel nut. She told me, she felt like eating bread so we went to town. It was a long walk and then a bus ride. We headed for the bakery in Lae City (Papua New Guinea). Grandma bought a whole loaf of white, unsliced bread; still hot and straight out of the bakery oven. The smell of the bread was unbelievable. Hugging the hot bread, I walked with grandma to the supermarket and she used the change to buy a tub of butter. Then we searched for a shady tree and she broke the loaf in half. She told me, it was half each.

“Eat it all” she said.

We dipped the halves in butter and ate the whole thing under the shade of a tree in the middle of Lae town. Bread was a treat. We never had that in the village. I cannot believe how much I ate that day. I can still smell the bread, 40 years later.

8. Who is your favourite character in a novel or film and why do you like them so much?

I love too many. One worthy of note is the common decency and friendship developed in Shawshank Redemption. I loved it because life has a way of rewarding us if we listen and feel more. Sometimes, because of our own perceptions, we miss the truth, opportunities and friendships.

9. What is your greatest ambition in life?

To teach more about LOVE by showing more LOVE. Hopefully it will grow and help others feel the same way.

10. What is the biggest compliment you have ever had?

I have been told that I am a good listener. That compliment is a kind one because, I am a very good talker too. I believe that being a good listener, takes skill. I hope they are right.


I have chosen these sister blogs because I really enjoy reading them, and I learn a lot from the writers. Some of these ladies make me laugh and I really like that because life is not all about being serious.

  1. A Refugee’s Journey – Vietnam to Australia

  2. Razorbackwriteraus

  3. Fifty Shades of Reality

  4. Altitude of Art

5. Poetheart

  1. L.T.Garvin

  2. Love Letters to Spam

Ten questions to nominees

  1. What makes you want to blog?

  2. What inspires you in life?

  3. What are your three favourite things and why?

  4. What is the most important thing you have ever done?

  5. Describe where you would like to live in the future and why?

  6. What do you miss most?

  7. Is there something special you would really like to do for someone and what is it?

  8. Do you have a lucky charm? Tell us about it.

  9. Have you or anyone close to you had a near-death experience? What happened?

  10. Name one thing you would like to do to change the world, if you could and how would you do that.

 

 

 

One Lovely Blog Award


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THANK YOU MILLIE THOM

Blogging is isolated and lonely. I am not writing in a newsroom where I can see writers and editors bustling in a typical newsroom I knew.  In a newsroom, I could discuss my story with an editor or another fellow writer, or work with a photographer.  In this blogger-world sometimes I feel, I am alone. I am reaching out to someone, somewhere, whom my story may appeal to. My story is like fresh bait on a hook, dropped in the middle of the deep, dark ocean.  I want the right fish to bite the hook, not any fish. So, the ‘bait’ has to be right. But how do I know if the bait is right? As writers, we don’t. Well I don’t, not 100 per cent anyway. Unless, we get feedback, research data and see some kind of recognition, we really don’t know if what we write is appreciated.

When my site-visit numbers were increasing recently, there were very few comments and ‘likes’ on each post. I have to admit, I felt doubt. I wondered why I would have many people visit my blog each day, and not interact. I would visit the few writers that “liked’ my post and be astounded by how many followers and hits they have had. I searched through their contents. What makes this blog great?, I asked myself. Some blogs were interesting and it made sense as to why they would have such an audience.  Others did not make sense at all – they were just popular. Like everything else, it really does not matter what you write and how you write it. That ‘bait’ will catch the reader that was meant for it. You have to catch your own niche market. I learnt, and told myself only to worry about my next story.

In the background, I did do some content research, adjusted my theme, and the layout. I took a course on content and UX with Open University and shortened my posts. (This post will not be one of those short ones). I kept on writing; refusing to use popular social networks to get my readers – or lure people who knew me. I covered most topics I loved and cared about. The risk was, that I could lose readers because of the varied topics. I borrowed some hints from Opinionated Man. Jason could scratch himself and blog it to get 400 “likes”. He was always true to himself. I enjoyed his narrative posts the most. I kept writing about the things I loved or believed in. It is real. So, my readership doubled in a month. And, somewhere in that increased number, someone connected with my content. My bait was taken.

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I won’t call her the right bait but a friend.

On November 2, a stranger appeared on my blog. She was wearing a China-red dress/top, armed with a natural straw hat with a black band that mysteriously and securely hid her face. I saw this picture after I received the first message from WordPress. It said: “millithom liked your post”.  I have had other “likes’ before so I paid no notice. I thought I would follow-up and view each respond when I had time in the evening. Then there was another ‘like” and another, by the same person. I immediately visited millithom’s blog and was very impressed with what she wrote. I learnt a lot from her. As an aspiring author myself, I was impressed with her book posts on writing in general and helpful advise on publishing. I was really grateful that she could relate to my post and COMMENT! On that same day, after the fourth “like”, millithom was hooked, I think. I say that with no malice. I got a notification that she started “following” me. It was the kind of ‘stalking’ that every blogger loves. The baited hook was taken by that fish. Each day since, this woman I have never seen her face except in an old photo, warmly responds to all my posts. She also writes very encouraging and heart-felt comments. For me and any writer or any blogger who is starting and ‘afraid’, we all need a millithom to put that hope into our doubting minds. I have mine. I also have L.T.Garvin, Poetheart! and Seafarrwide. There is a kind of sisterblog-hood going.

Thank you Millie Thom, blogger, author (Shadow of the Raven), with a gorgeous heart for nominating me for this award. It means a lot to me. I will continue to strive to keep the content of Tribalmystic blog interesting. Thank you Millie, my followers, and returned readers and I would appreciate any feedback to improve this blog. I also appreciate the quiet ones. Your silence and presence are both appreciated and acknowledged.

Wine women and watercolours 264
Self-portrait. JLeahy, Acrylics & Inks on canvas. 2012.

Seven Lovely Things…

As requested by the conditions of this award, I have to tell you seven “lovely” things about me. Ahhhumm.. (I asked my sons and my colleague today) and they made some comments I shall not repeat; so I have to do this task the best I can.

1. I am a queen of surprises. (I am that confident). Even after all these years, I can still surprise my sons in their ‘older age’, family members and friends. I love the intrigue. I love mysteries. I love how happy I make them.

  1. When I was growing up, the children in my village used to call me a spirit. I was lighter skinned but had tanned from hours in the sun. I had straight hair which was blonde from swimming in the sea every day. All that time, I thought I was black. The children kept telling me, I was white. I think it is lovely to be both.

  2.  I easily make friends with strangers and people from all walks of life. I could connect and have a deep conversation with a stranger, that I had just met. It scares my children.

  3. I love nature.  The Ocean, forest, and all life forms. I believe that Earth is in danger. We should all be seriously concerned about what is happening in climate change and each make a commitment to do something about it.

  4. I am who I am because I am the thread that runs in the fabric created by my mother,  grandmother and my people.

  5. I love stories – telling and hearing.

7. I make art from anything..but I love drawing with  pencil and watercolours.

Pencil - Meri Karim Pikinini
Pencil on paper. “Meri Karim Pikinini” JLeahy. 2014

…………………………………………

Nominate other blogs I read and like:

1. Millie Thom

2. Seafarrwide

3. MyTwoSentence

  1. Poetheart! 

  2. Notes From An Alien

6. L.T.Garvin 

7. Vera Komnig

  1. Life in Russia

  2. HiMe

  3. When Women Inspire

plus more………

 

 

 

Introduction – About Tribalmystic Blog


Welcome and thank you for reading my blog. My name is Joycelin Leahy. My blog name is Tribal Mystic. I am an Ahe (pronounced: aah hee) woman from Morobe Province, Papua New Guinea (PNG); one of the most unique and diverse countries of many tribes, languages, cultures and natural beauty. I now live in Brisbane, Australia and work between the two countries.

Whether you come from PNG or not, we all come from tribes and we belong to some kind of tribal group and material objects or things that give us our identity. I believe each person and each thing has a story. I am hoping to share with you some of these stories about people, animals and things that have been part of my life. I hope that you would find these stories interesting and share them with others. I have been a journalist, artist, an arts curator, business woman, climate activist and story-teller and a mother of two amazing sons. I have also been a cleaner, house painter, body painter, sales person, renovator, telemarketer, campaigner – you name it, I have tried many things…As present, I write for pleasure and I paint and teach others to paint while I run my art gallery in Bellbowrie called Beyond Pacific Art.

I am very passionate about sustainable heritage particularly with the effects of climate change. I would also like to see more women in PNG and the Pacific Islands become self-sufficient by using their traditional heritage to do contemporary business and at the same time, not give in to too much commercialisation and losing their traditional skills. Teach your daughters and grand daughters your skills now. I only hope for eco-tourism in the future and I would like to see Pacific Island countries, particularly the Melanesians work extra hard to preserve their unique heritages.  We are losing many languages. I support visual artists and embrace all the challenges that women face around the world and particularly in my country and the islands. There will be posts about many of my interests I have just mentioned as part of my introduction to this blog. I hope what I write would support, educate and be simply enjoyed. Please give me some honest feedback.

I have been contemplating this role as a blogger for almost three years and was always afraid and concerned that I would never have the right content or quantity to write about. Just writing this tonight makes me feel like a very excited small kid dying to play in a large playground with strangers. I took some time to speak to friends and family who are expert bloggers (thank you Mari Ellingson – Island Meri) and looked at veterans Malum Nalu and Masalai and after some research and feedback I have finally taken the giant step. I hope that I can stand comfortably on my feet in the coming months and make another step towards sharing extraordinary stories and pictures. I will write about art, culture, heritage, climate change, creative writing, nature, family women, business, music, beauty and fashion, but to name a few. Each post will be different and could be from any of these topics. In this first blog, I would like to share an image of two birds – both lorikeets that have come to live with us here on the outskirts of the city in Bellbowrie. Over the years my sons and I have loved and cared for animals and insects and I often get a shock when without warning I find a dead beetle in the freezer, waiting to be buried properly. I have also been deeply moved often when my sons make me stop at roadsides to pick up road-kills and take them home with us. Whether it be a possum or bird they wanted us to take the animals home to give them a good burial in our yard. Next blog I will share with you one of my short stories about life in Brisbane City. Tenk yu tumas na lukim yu! (Thank you very much and I’ll be seeing you!).

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Kaz (rainbow lorikeet) breaking the ice on their first day they became friends. It was Christmas day 2013. Nisha (scale breasted Lorikeet) was not impressed but they got on better as the days progressed. Kaz has been with us four months and Nisha,  just under a month. They both fell out of their nests and could not fly.

Tribal Mystic tribalmystic