I just wanted to say that I’m flying to Singapore and Indonesia in a couple of hours and I’ll stay there for about a month to visit my family.
My route is the following:
Singapore – Medan – Malang – Bali – Malang – Singapore
As you see I’ll be visiting a couple of places which, I hope, will make interesting blog material. I’d like to write you as soon as I arrive down there but I’m not too sure about having immediate internet access…
Still, you’ll surely hear from me at the latest after my Bali trip!
Until then – an enjoyable summer to you all and lots of love from Switzerland!
Stella (ready to take off)
These are shots of the Tanah Lot Bay my dad & I made 2 years ago, when our family went on vacation to Bali. It was the most amazing summer I’ve ever had and I was so happy that this week’s photo challenge was about water, so I could reminisce in old memories back from that time.
And yeah, I know, it’s about water & water’s blue, but I “re-discovered” b/w photos and just couldn’t resist to edit these photos here…
It’s 00:57 am and I’m still up, annoyed that I didn’t write yesterday. But I am pretty tired (I just can’t sleep) and a quote hasn’t left my mind since sunday: It’s a quote I read on Fidel Hart’s Blog:
“…travel can become a compulsion. It keeps us away from friends and loved ones – even when we’re back. When I’m away, I often yearn for home. When I’m home, I’m listless. I seem no longer to fit. History and literature are filled with characters who see Asia, or Venice, and can never go back to the way they were.” -Anthony Bourdain
I commented, that I don’t travel as much as other people do, but because of moving from Indonesia to Switzerland at a very young age, I sometimes doubt my belonging. Or actually, I sometimes don’t know where to belong. I think, if I left Indonesia when I was a baby, I surely think of Switzerland as my homeland. And if I left Switzerland in my teenager years, Indonesia would be my homeland. It’s just too bad that I left at an age somewhere in the middle between the two options above; it has the effect on me that I’ve spent too little time in Indonesia to have the complete feeling of belonging there; but also have not experienced my whole childhood in Switzerland, so that I missed the little, but somehow important things, that you traditionally do in your country during your childhood. I mean kindergarten is in every country different. And these things connect people; in primary school they would once in a while talk about their kindergarten times and share all these memories and traditions they’ve learned together, while I somehow felt a bit left out.
So during the past day I’ve been wondering, once again, where I truly belong too. There are many people asking me whether I like Switzerland or Indonesia more. I’ve got to say, that’s a tricky question and my answer depends on my mood; after visiting my relatives in Indonesia, I’d definitely say Indonesia; but after recently having some amazing experiences with Swiss friends, I surely say Switzerland. Anyway I don’t think that’s the point to really come to an answer about my musings. The belonging to a country, a state, a nation, does it really depend on how much you like it? I guess that now, that Switzerland has a rather conservative attitude obverse (?) (criminal) foreigners, which doesn’t please a few people I know, they still think of themselves belonging to Switzerland: First, because it just the country in which they were born and second there are of course, other, better sides of Switzerland!
And if I’d compared the traits of my two homelands, I don’t think that I’ll know the answer; because everything has its good and its bad sides.
After a long time thinking (I’m so tired, I’ll might write down all my thoughts some time later for you) I came to the conclusion that maybe I belong to neither of these two nations. Why? I think that with me being dragged from my birthplace at a young age, but still not being long enough in another country, I define the word “home” for me not basing on which country I like more to live in,or in which country I’ve got more friends, or on my actual situation (living in Switzerland) in contrary to my birthplace (Indonesia); no, I simply adjusted my heart on where my family momentarily is, I think. (Or, at least that’s what I think at the moment, this may change tomorrow morning.) I think, that home is where I’m surrounded by my family, because that’s when I feel most at ease, and so home to me could also be Germany, French, Italy or Austria; it doesn’t really matter as long as my family’s around me.
What’s home for you?
And you know it’s now 01:32 am and I’m really, really tired and can’t concentrate. I’m sorry that this post didn’t focus so much on the quote at the beginning, if you expected a spectacular analysis or so. And I’d like to write more, but am plainly tired, maybe I’m writing some part 2 tomorrow (I’ve got ideas referring to the movie Up In The Air).
As for now, goodnight world!
Just short for today: I just want to quickly write down my observations at a lunch I had to attend today. It’s actually a launch of my family and some other Indonesian families & friends of us.
Observations on a New Year’s Lunch of Indonesian families
- Most essential point: We like to eat Asian, especially Chinese food. Don’t ask me why, but on every great occasion there would be Chinese food. It’s true many of us have Chinese roots, because many centuries ago, many Chinese people came to Indonesia (and brought their traditions, and that means food too, with them), but still… I mean, I’m bored and annoyed of eating so many times Chinese food. But this whole thing could probably just be, because there are Chinese restaurants everywhere around the world. 😉
- We like to share our food with others. Like every typical Asian (? Or probably just Indonesian?) family we order the main course for everyone. That means that there are several dishes on the table and everybody just takes a bit of what he likes best, which is possible to order in Chinese/Asian restaurants. That’s in fact a really good idea; if I go eat Chinese with my Swiss friends, I always order a menu for myself and afterwards I’m always full up. So, I just eat as much as I can (without having a bad conscience for not finishing my meal) and in the end there’d be always someone eating up the rest. 😉
- There are always photos taken (Eh, actually not only of the people, but of the food as well.). Which can be very annoying, but also somehow funny, because it has somehow developed to an Asian trait (just watch the behaviour of Asian tourist, which is also very cute and funny) over the years.
- Indonesian are known for their love for food; I think that of all nations I’ve got to know, Indonesians really love food most. Whereas European tourist would particularly recommend to each other good hotels, museums and shops, Asian tourists look for the best restaurants! It’s so typical; when my cousin was once visiting us here in Switzerland, we didn’t get to make a full sight-seeing tour because of their importance of having a culinary tour. 😀
- The passion for food is also shown in their conversation topics. When I listened to my mum and her friends, they mostly talk about food! But not only food of all kinds, but also the cooking, and of course, good restaurants you just have to visit once in your life.
Well, that was it for now. Seeing, observing, hearing this has just made me so happy; I think it’s cute (Go ahead. Just think I’m weird.) to see people getting so happy just by enjoying and eating food, talking about food.
And last, I’ve finished reading Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins today; and I just found the perfect quote of the main character, Katniss Everdeen for this post:
“… All around the dining hall, you can feel the rejuvenating effect that a good meal can bring on. The way it can make people kinder, funnier, more optimistic, and remind them it’s not a mistake to go on living. …”