Tuesday 04-11-2008

Joep en Marijke
Today we have a day off, get out of bed quietly in the morning, no plans, no obligations.
It is nice to be at home, do some laundry, just by hand, without a washing machine, so it takes some time. We also use only cold water. We don’t have hot running water, and we don’t really miss it. Doing laundry like this, makes me appreciate the washing machine in Holland more. Throw the laundry in, push the button, that’s it.
But we can also appreciate the way things are here. In this heat it is nice just to do some laundry.
Joep is typing the travel report from yesterday. If we don’t keep up with that, it’s not good.
Before noon we decide to go to Ampenan. We want to buy a small side table and a table lamp. First we start looking for a side-table. On the way to Ampenan there are several furniture shops.  
We find a nice “opium-table” but it is a bit too expensive. “Harga pas” the girl says; fixed price, so we cannot “tawar” (bargain).
We drive on to the direction of  Montong. There we find another shop, but they only have very extensively decorated tables, ugly as sin, we think.
So we decide to look further. At the moment we want to go on, we meet Oekie. Someone we met years ago at café Berry. So we have to talk for a while.
As we both really liked the “opium table” we saw before, and the price, compared to Dutch prices, is really low, we decide to go back to that shop.
They show us two different tables, both made of teakwood, but one a bit lighter coloured than the other.  We prefer the dark one, and tell the seller a bemo will pick it up in the afternoon. No, the lady says, 2 weeks delivery-time, and we bring it to your house. “No way” I answer, ”in two weeks we are in Holland”. So at the latest we want to have it tomorrow, otherwise we won’t buy it!”
She has to discuss with one of her colleagues, then they promise us the table will be delivered at 16.00 tomorrow. This whole conversation is in Indonesian language, and Joep has to admit that life here is easier when you speak some Indonesian.
I even can explain to them how to get to our house. Something like this:
Just before Graha there is a bridge. Before the bridge take the sand road to the right. When you reach the village ask for Yup or bapu Belande, everyone there knows us and they will show you the way to our house.
Because we don’t have a real address, the streets have no names, there are no house numbers, we have to do it this way. Then we drive back to Senggigi. When we reach Batu Bolong we see in Senggigi it is raining a lot. It is a nice view from a distance, so we just wait.
As we see the sky getting lighter, we drive on, and want to go to Coco Loco on the other side of Senggigi for a drink. In Senggigi the street changed into a river. While we carefully drive on, another motor overtakes us in a big hurry. Result: we both are soaking wet! Tidak apa apa, it doesn’t matter.
When we sit at Coco Loco, it’s pouring with rain again.
But we are fine, drink something, watch the sea, and wait for the rain to stop.
We watch the little shops and stalls at the pasar. We talk with a boy who has a little shop at the pasar. Last year he saw pictures of our stall and he tried to copy the lay out to his shop. We like it. It’s a nice boy, and he tries to look into the tourist’s mind.
We explain to him tourist don’t like to be pushed so much when they enter the shop. It’s better to give them some time to look around.  
When you push them too much, what sellers usually do in Indonesia, you scare them away. He thinks it is interesting, and worth a try. We hope it works!
When we walk to our motor, the phone is ringing. It’s Adi, telling us there are some people from Belanda visiting us. It takes us 5 minutes to get home. There we see, on our terrace, Izaak and Lory. Adi has been a perfect host. Already offered them some coffee.  We are so glad with Adi and Mariam as neighbours. Izaak is the important staff member in Indonesia of LombokCare, a foundation from Roermond, Holland. They support a lot of projects in Lombok. We already tried to meet him before, and told this to Mohni. Well, Mohni is a friend of Izaak, and told Izaak we were looking forward to meet him. So now he is visiting us. Lory is a lady from Switzerland. Ever since Izaak was a little boy, she coaches and helps him, together with Marita, a lady from Holland.
It’s good to hear Izaak’s story. He was young, and quite lazy, when he met the ladies. They kept insisting he should study, try to find a job and, very important, save some money.
Indonesian people are not used to save money. It took some time, but after a while, because the ladies didn’t give up, he started saving money. Especially Marita was very severe and insisting, he says with a laugh.
Thanks to this, Izaak now has his own, new built, house. I also ask him something else. I know, people in Indonesia can be very jealous when someone can afford more than another.
That’s right, the people in Izaak’s kampung were very jealous, asked if he got the money from the friends from Europe. They couldn’t and wouldn’t believe Izaak saved the money himself.        
Now Izaak has no contact with that kampung anymore, but he changed into a person with a strong personality and a lot of self confidence. Adi is sitting with us, listening. I think Adi also has some trouble with jealousy from the kampung. He lives in a beautiful house. He doesn’t tell us directly, but sometimes we feel it. For instance when he tells us people from the kampung have to understand he is not a rich man. If he was, he wouldn’t have to sell watches on the beach and at hotels.
We enjoy the talking with Izaak and Lory. It makes us understand Lombok a little better. Izaak has gone through a lot, started to get a western mentality.
We talk for hours, and before we realize it’s eight o’clock. Izaak and Lory leave. We will visit Izaak another time in his house, and for sure we will meet Lory at Graha, where she is staying. We sit and talk with Adi for a while, until we see it’s half past nine.
Too late for shopping, too late for the internet-café and too late to go out for diner. But Joep offers to make us some diner.
Well, he boils some water for instant noodles. Just add some boiling water with the noodles, and 3 minutes later you have a meal.
Very proudly he comes out with our diner, Adi is roaring with laughter!
Hamad, who used to work at Bumi Aditya, joins us. I love to see him again, we had a real good time together at Bumi Aditya.
But Hamad has changed, has become more quiet.
Now he works for Senggigi Beach Hotel. He has to keep sellers away from the hotel-guests that lie on the beach.
There is something like a chain-fencing on the beach. Sellers may not pass this. We think it looks ridiculous. 
Now Hamad tells us Senggigi Beach Hotel has made an agreement with the Kepala Desa. He hires local people as Security to keep away the sellers. Because the Security and sellers know each other, the sellers won’t make it too hard for the Security. Hamad sometimes had to send away his own friends an neighbours. Now, out of respect for Hamad, they don’t come to that place anymore. It works, sellers stay away, of course the Kepala Desa gets some money, and Hamad has a job, even better paying than his job at Bumi Aditya. But we think it’s sad, when he explains how humble he has to be towards the hotel guests. He may hardly speak to them.
The more expensive the hotel, the more humble the staff has to be. Some way we understand it, but it makes us sad to see how Hamad has changed. He used to be a self confident, happy boy when he was working at Bumi Aditya.
The more time we spend in Lombok, the more we see, the more we learn.
Sometimes it is not easy to understand things, but sometimes it makes things easier for us, because we now learn to understand why people live like they do.
There’s one thing that really worries me. Back in Holland I will have to tell to some sponsors that a child quit school. And try to explain why, why the parents are so different from Holland.
In fact, to understand these things, you should live in Indonesia for a while.
Izaak had a good way to explain this:
Sometimes parents say: “I also made it without reading and writing, so why shouldn’t my child make it without school?”.
Gladly now most of the parents realize why school is very important for their children.
Indonesia is changing, but it takes a lot of time!