top of page

N'drop in Oceania

Baskets hanging at Lorengau Market. Source: Michelle N Rooney.

N’drop ita nondria kol n’dras (N’drop in Oceania)

Nali: Nongan u po wong iye ara nongna kol Nali. Nali ara hu n’dramat pe pihin hu ro nondriya Manus pe Manus ita nondriya kol namandran Papua New Guinea.

English: The language I am speaking here is the language of Nali people of Manus in the nation (bikples) Papua New Guinea.


Nali: Ngala kol iye mahapo u po rait itali, ara N’drop in Oceania.

English: The name of the place here that I am currently writing in (this website) is N’drop in Oceania.


Nali: N’drop ara nongna Nali para melit para kuniyani hu melit tehe namnam, bruwe, walah, ngah, pe hu melit hayah hayah.

English: N’drop (pronounced drop) is the Nali word for the thing that is used to carry things such as food, betelnut, mustard, lime, and other things.


Nali: Nongna English ara hu pwai basket. Hamou n’galan iya nongna English ara hu pwai bag.

English: In the English language they say basket. Another name for it in English is bag.


Nali: Hu pihi Nali, pe hu haya pihi Manus soyon ngara hu ka til n’drop. Para sowani. Para hu kai kii kowas ta pihin, ndre kowas para dramat i mat.

English: Nali women, and many other Manus women, make n’drop. For selling. For them to gift during kastam such as bride price, or during mortuary ceremonies.


Nali: N’drop ara m’bruliyen tan melit namandran nondriya Manus. Bruliye n’drop, nondriya n’drop, kuniyani n’drop, pe kowas tan ara melit namandran.

English: N’drop is a significant thing in Manus. The production of n’drop, inside the n’drop, the carrying of n’drop, and its customary value are significant.


Nali: Kapa a ya Manus, pe aya kili maket, ara andre a nimnim n’drop soyon soyon hu pihin hu til pe hu ikii n’drop tahu ndrungak para hu dramat ka sowani.

English: If you go to Manus, and you go to the market, you will see many n’drop that the women who have made them have hung and displayed for people to buy.


Nali: Nongna English tahu yap ara hu pwai “drop” ara tehe hape bruskau (little) n’dran n’dre n’dras.

English: In the English language they say “drop” to mean a tiny bit of liquid.


Nali: Ara nongan maluwoh ara. Si ara N’drop ta nongna Nali para Manus. Pe si ara drop ta nongna English - tehe hape m’bruskau n’dran n’dre n’dras.

English: These are two terms. One is N’drop which is basket in the Nali language of Manus. The other is drop in the English language which is like a tiny bit of liquid.


Nali: Andre ku wong ka kili nongna English hu pwai - Ocean. Ocean ara n’dras namandran.

English: I will speak about the English word Ocean. Ocean is the term for a vast or large body of sea.


Nali: Manus i ta nondriya kol namandran Papua New Guinea. I ta nondriya kol hu yap pa-len hu yiikii ngalan iya Pacific. Pacific ara hu kol pe hu n’dramat pe pihin soyon soyon hu ro nondria n’dras namamdran. Kol Pacific ngalan si ara Oceania. Hu soyon n’dramat pe pihi Pacific ngara hu ka pwai hu namili ngala kol n’dras kiya Oceania. Oceania ara hian para tesa ara ngala n’dras.

English: Manus is inside Papua New Guinea. It is inside the region that White people have called the Pacific. The Pacific is made up of many many places and people who live in the vast sea. Another name for the Pacific is Oceania. Many Pacific people, prefer the name Oceania. Oceania is a name because it reflects the sea.


Nali: Nongan maluwoh ara. Si ara ocean ngala ndras. Pe si ara Oceania ngala kol n’dras.

English: That is two points. The first is Ocean, that is saltwater or the vast sea. And the other is, Oceania, the name of the place that is the ocean.


Nali: Hu yap, si nongna hu iya English ara ngara hu ka pwai toro, “drop in the ocean”. “Drop in the ocean” ara hape bruskau n’dras i yos n’dre ita nondriya n’dras namandran. Tehe melit m’bruskau masi pe tehe tu Nali tu pwai, “ara hapesa pwi”. Pe si, “drop in”, ara tehe hamou ki sa nimei wou n’dre wou aya nimei hu pemili ndre hiye hiye pe namnam ka wule parii hu, pe a titiye pairii hu, n’dre wawu ka wong pwahanou. Ara hu pwai, a “drop in” - aya nimei hu.

English: In the English language, there is a saying, “drop in the ocean”. Drop in the ocean is a tiny drop of salt water drops or is inside the vast sea or ocean. It is like a very minor thing that in Nali we might say, “that is a minor thing”, or “don’t worry about it”. Another meaning of “drop in” is to visit. So when someone comes to see you or you go to visit family or friends and share a meal, tell stories, or share guidance and advice, we call this to drop in.


Nali: Nimnim to ara, yorou Nali, tehe yorou Manus tehe n’drop, pe n’drop ara tehe drop in the ocean. Kapa tu kaikii nongan iye ka kili nongna kol andre tu ka pwai, yorou Manus ara tehe N’drop in Oceania.

English: The way I sea things is that us Manus are like n’drop, and n’drop is like drop in the ocean. If we apply these words to the Nali language, then we might say we Manus, as symbolised in the Manus basket, n’drop, are like N’drop in Oceania.


Nali: Mahapo ara kol torou Oceania pe Oceania ara kol torou. Yorou masikene ta nondriya n’dras namandran torou.

English: Today, our place we belong to Oceania and Oceania is our home. We all are in Oceania.


Nali: U yiikii ngala seu iye para ku titiye, pe ku rait nondriyalii, u yiikii n’galan N’drop in Oceania para tesa mahapo ara hu kamai pe pihi Manus hu kan tokiyai kana gnawan masi. Hu kanirikai kina kol namandran Papua New Guinea, pe kol masi tahu yap, pe Oceania.

English: I have given the name of this ‘house’ (website) in which I will tell stories and write, I have given the name N’drop in Oceania because today Manus have walked (travelled) far outside. They have walked to the big place of Papua New Guinea and beyond to foreign lands, and into Oceania.

NOTE: This is an unedited version.

104 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


Couldn’t Load Comments
It looks like there was a technical problem. Try reconnecting or refreshing the page.
Post: Blog2_Post
bottom of page