Well, much has been happening here in Yogyakarta – so much so I’ve got too many things to write about. This post is going to be a bit of this and a bit of that – a campur.
We’ve been back to the coast again for more swimming, relaxation and seafood – this time with the ACICIS mob. We headed off on a very modern, well appointed (or not) bus and made the long journey to the Pantai three hours from Yogya. The weekend away was an exercise in copious amounts of sunshine, good food and good company. The fresh air was a welcome break from the pollution of Yogya (motorbike trips to uni involve inhaling a fairly large amount of carbon monoxide and other goodies) and the water was cool. This time we also had the added benefit of no recent tsunamis, or more to the point, no fear-mongering parents (see Pantai Indrayanti post). We spent our time at a different beach than our previous trip- though not far, with around 25 staff and students from the ACICIS program. In true Indonesian fashion, our pre-planned itinerary changed somewhere along the journey and what started out as a nice lunch at Pantai Baron followed by fun and relaxation at Pantai Kukup, ended up being pleasant lunch at Pantai Krakal and the days spent at Pantai Sundak. All the same, a great weekend away.
We were also lucky enough to be invited to a Javanese wedding. For those that don’t know, Jasmine and I had a Javanese wedding ceremony not long after our wedding in Australia in 2007, so it was nice to see the action from the other perspective. The nervous groom was a local from our kampung; marrying a girl from far off, distant Bantul Regency (about 30 minutes driving from Yogya). We set off in an (dis)organised car convey of representatives of each family from the kampung (and us), travelling down roads running between rice paddies and tree-lined laneways. The upacara (ceremony) was held in a dirt floored temporary pavilion in the centre of the kampung. Children watched on through open windows and a very nervous bride and groom made their declarations of marriage in front friends and family, with a rafter of turkeys (yep, it is, Google it) making regular interjections from behind the stage. The upacara speeches were largely in formal Javanese, which not everyone speaks. Most locals speak Ngoko but highly formal Javanese is somewhat of a specialty language, so large portions of the crowd (me definitely included) couldn’t understand what was being said. So, in true Indonesia fashion, they spoke amongst themselves when unable to follow! The ceremony involved the couple being presented with gifts and food, then they formally thank their parents for their role in raising them; then feed each other food and tea. All the while we were fed and watered with bancaan during the upacara. Food is central to everything.
We’ve both also been battling some pesky colds (masuk angin) with a local herbal remedy (Tolak angin) and coin treatment massages (kerokan) – brutal but amazingly effective. All in a battle to be fit an healthy for the many events coming up – a short notice trip to Jakarta, our Mum’s visiting, Jack’s ceremony, plus life in general! Not enough time to be sick!