Indonesia

I love Indonesia because Indonesia loves me: Last round

A final batch of the smiling faces that brought me such joy during a month in Indonesia:

Yogyakarta, while my ice cream melts

Yogyakarta, while my ice cream melts

and another

and another

Brain Urlacher, Indonesian edition

Brain Urlacher, Indonesian edition

Wolfed most of my ice cream down by this point (and was licking it off my fingers)

Wolfed most of my ice cream down by this point (and was licking it off my fingers)

Semarang: I got caught in the rain. Then Ivan invited me under his shelter. We all talked for over an hour. They fed me too.

Semarang: I got caught in the rain. Then Ivan invited me under his shelter. We all talked for over an hour. They fed me too.

Semarang:  as mentioned before , my Grab driver brought me to his home and introduced me to his family. This is his lovely and engaging daughter Fauzia.

Semarang: as mentioned before, my Grab driver brought me to his home and introduced me to his family. This is his lovely and engaging daughter Fauzia.

Jakarta: I had to catch a bus back to my room by the station was spiral and confusing. An off the clock driver stopped, told me how, continued on. I did another loop. He saw me again, laughed at me a little. Then said "Get in" and took me to my destination for free. Here we are no doubt violating numerous regulations.     How I love Indonesia.

Jakarta: I had to catch a bus back to my room by the station was spiral and confusing. An off the clock driver stopped, told me how, continued on. I did another loop. He saw me again, laughed at me a little. Then said "Get in" and took me to my destination for free. Here we are no doubt violating numerous regulations.   

How I love Indonesia.

I love Indonesia because Indonesia loves me, part 2

More friends I've made during my month here:

Palembang: I was walking across a bridge and they ran up, no hesitation. They knew what they wanted.

Palembang: I was walking across a bridge and they ran up, no hesitation. They knew what they wanted.

Palembang: even the police love me here

Palembang: even the police love me here

Palembang: tattoo shop owner. Think we have anything in common?

Palembang: tattoo shop owner. Think we have anything in common?

Palembang: we all fit. Kind of.

Palembang: we all fit. Kind of.

Yogyakarta: I love the smiles and styles

Yogyakarta: I love the smiles and styles

Yogyakarta: peace

Yogyakarta: peace

Yogyakarta: he wanted my sunglasses

Yogyakarta: he wanted my sunglasses

Borobudur Temple: think I am the Same Same?

Borobudur Temple: think I am the Same Same?

All that I've left behind

When my snailshell came via the amazon I laughed, wondering how all I needed would cram down into 46 liters. But four pairs of shorts became two, one sleeping bag became none, and so on. It's worked--and when I've needed new or replacements they have stores here. All good.

I also brought a hat.

CBS's newest buddy cop show

CBS's newest buddy cop show

While I had sense enough to not get sentimental about most of what I brought, I didn't do the same with my hat. And that sucks because I lost it the other day. After months of watching it like a hawk, pinning it between my head and hand when even a light breeze worked up, I just left it somewhere--I think when I was changing at the hot springs following my sunrise trek up Mt. Batur.  

purty

purty

It was just a ballcap, promoting my Nashville Predators. But my brother gave me that hat more than a decade ago. It'd been through a lot--the bill fabric was shredded, it was stained many times over, there was a perspiration smell that wouldn't go away. Still, it was irreplaceable.

And now it can never be.


When I started writing decades ago I hated writing settings. I found them boring. I was more interested in dialogue, action, characters and their relationships--setting was a waste of time. Who cared about forests except Robert Fucking Frost?

Perhaps my contempt for world-building proceeded from my contempt from my own world, thinking as I'd thought in my youth that I was better than my country upbringing.

But I learned. To write a relationship you need to set it's time and a place. The relationships in Pride and Prejudice are different than those in The Hunger Games, by necessity. Just as I learned, as I've traveled to places exotic and shiny, met people who are kind and true and good--strangers and little birdies who fed and sheltered me and replaced that which I've lost and left behind--that where I come from also has a lot of good. I can't divorce myself from it. It's in my bones. 


Life is choices--and you have to choose a place to be, according to Drs Pauli and Hill:  

Which means that some things or people--even those I care about deeply--must sometimes be left behind as I take the return trip down the road less traveled. It sucks immeasurably as noted earlier. But the memories and joy can be carried.

And more than one hat can hold happy sentiment. 

is this not the face of happy?

is this not the face of happy?

I love Indonesia because Indonesia loves me

Some friends I've met during my first week in Wonderful Indonesia! :

while walking down the street in Medan

while walking down the street in Medan

at breakfast, Lake Toba

at breakfast, Lake Toba

celebrating  the Batak people  in traditional clothing, Lake Toba

celebrating the Batak people in traditional clothing, Lake Toba

she insisted on one of her own

she insisted on one of her own

in Lake Toba a couple of Dutch girls and I crashed a family naming celebration (kind of like a family reunion): he is the local gov't leader's "right hand man." 

in Lake Toba a couple of Dutch girls and I crashed a family naming celebration (kind of like a family reunion): he is the local gov't leader's "right hand man." 

Bingo is his name. o. Lake Toba.

Bingo is his name. o. Lake Toba.