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Tag Archives: Jakarta

20040842Today, Don took me south, about 100 km away from the city, to Punchak to visit his mom’s rice plantation. It’s here that one of their servants, Katiman, lives with his wife and child and takes care of the main house and plantation. The village they live in seems typical of a rural community here in Indonesia with dirt roads and oxen and cattle roaming freely. Houses are really nothing more than shacks built of bricks and cinder blocks with thatch roofs, dirt floors and no properly wired electricity, at least not by our standards. Katiman’s house was much nicer than most of the small houses in the area and was built more in the modern style with plumbing and electricity. Of course, the main house was enormous and thoroughly modern. Much of the fields look like they’re underwater since they are growing rice. The women tend the fields doing so much of the backbreaking labor of planting the rice, while the men do the occasional big jobs such as dealing with irrigation or plowing with the oxen. However, it often looks like they just sit around a lot while the women work. Read More »

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Well I’m in Jakarta now visiting with my friend, Don, whom I met in my climbing class. Don is a great guy to know in a country like Indonesia where probably 80% of its residents are below the poverty level and unemployment is high. Don’s mom has a very nice place just south of town and it’s like staying at some five-star resort with big rooms, A/C, swimming pool, and a beautiful garden. She’s got a lot of people working in her employ taking care of the house, cooking, cleaning, etc. This is one of the few down days that I have and I’m truly enjoying being spoiled in this manner. The only drawback is that every morning at 5 a.m. there is a mosque just behind their house that starts calling people to prayer over a loudspeaker. Since Don and his family are Catholic in a predominantly Muslim neighborhood, they tend to ignore it. It’s hard for me to ignore since my window faces the loudspeaker.Indonesia_sm99
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