destination

9 months living in the most Muslim country in the world

It’s exactly today my 9 months anniversary of living in Indonesia. Time flies by. I felt a bit afraid, afraid and excited, before first stepping foot here. I knew so little about Indonesia. My time was short to do any research on it and when I did have a little time I preferred to keep away form creating any prejudiced or stereotyped impressions from books or any media. Personal experience with an open heart and an open mind is always what I choose. Flying here I had a 6 hour layover in Abu Dhabi. That was actually my first real contact with an Islamic country. Sitting just in the airport, observing the people. Further on, reaching Indonesia, I could just feel that the Muslims of Indonesia are different than the Muslims of the United Arab Emirates. Later I found out that there are some actual formal differences in the Muslim … Continue reading

Batik: fabled cloth of Java

My Indonesian experience so far enriched me so much! I am grateful to be living here in Java, Indonesia and to study from professionals the amazing UNESCO certified Masterpiece of Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity certified Indonesian textile art, batik. It was one of my dreams to study art formally and this art form is so beautiful and it suits me so much. Besides the technique itself which has its challenges, batik is an art so full of philosophical meaning! Each type of batik says a story. Batik is a textile art based on the technique of decorating and (repeatedly) dyeing a fabric by using removable wax to save the parts of the fabric that are not intended to be dyed. Batik is centuries old and the diversity of patterns, motifs and colors used stand as a proof for the cultural diversity that can be found in Indonesia itself … Continue reading

A visit at the Borobudur temple

When you come to Indonesia you shouldn’t miss visiting the largest Buddhist temple in the world, located in Central Java: Borobudur. It is impressive! It is actually the number one sightseeing site on the list of every tourist coming to the Java island. Borobudur is basically built in a hill, consists of six square platforms and three circular platforms at the top, being in a shape of a Buddhist mandala, as it can be seen from the photos below: The temple is decorated with 2 672 relief panels and 504 Buddha statues. On the top platform there is a main dome surrounded by 72 Buddha statues which are each placed inside a perforated stupa (a stupa is a hemispherical structure which contains Buddhist relics. Stupas all over the world have slightly different designs. However, one beautiful symbolism of the stupa that I’ve been told of is that of a water … Continue reading

The Durian fruit: a love story

My love story with durian didn’t start off so passionately from the beginning … I was warned that one either loves it or hates it. Still, the rule is this: you have to try it three times before you can be sure of your feelings toward it.¬† At first I found the smell to be a bit disgusting (just to have an idea, some people describe as “the smell of a very dirty toilet”) and the taste not so special. But as I gave it more chances I finally fell in love with it. I observed with surprise how my senses changed their perception: the smell is one of the best, delicate and distinct perfumes¬† in the world, the consistency and taste are comparable to one of the most delicious artisan Italian gelato you could find out there! And yes, it is all natural! And it doesn’t stop here! Durian … Continue reading