at a local market
Indonesia, Sumatra, Lake Toba, Tuk Tuk,
As usual during my evenings here in Tuk Tuk I have moved over to Peter Nit Noi Chang's guest house, not to hang out with Mister Fatso the presumed child molester but to have a cold Bintang together with Mama Cesca, his landlady.
There is usually no mistaking Peter's bulky shape sitting outside the guest house enjoying the last warm rays of sun of the day, his long goatee hanging down on his sweaty chest disappearing in the layers of human fat, always trying to strike up a conversation with me - a lonely man liked by nobody on the island according to Mama Cesca.
No Peter today though and having our usual evening bottle of cold Bintang she tells me Peter has taken the ferry to Parapat for a "social" visit to the local wh*rehouse, an activity he endulces himself in once or twice a week she tells me while her fingers play with holes in my old jeans.
Though the Batak people are officially chatolic or protestant Mama Cesca has been explaining to me the high importance of the spirit world , animism mixed with animal spirituality, has
inside a funeral house
got on the communal minds of her people, the mistrust that ruled between the different villages and that was so high that in times long gone there weren't even roads from one settlement to the other. Members caught from a nearby village would often end up on the notorious stone "dinner" table usually situated in the heart of the village.
I presume that canibalism must be a helluva deterent to outsiders!!!
She also tells me about the many funeral houses I have been seeing all around the Samosir Island during my hikes, elaborate and creative in design often with all sorts of statues around it symbolising the life of the deceased.
She tells me about the Singa, a half buffalo/half snake mythical underworld entity that apparently possesses the power to drive off evil spirits - important in a society that has got such a strong obsession with spirituality I should think!!!
Her fingers still playing with the holes in my old jeans she also explains me that Peter, who by the way is her only guest, is not supposed to come back untill late so maybe we could move over to her room and continue the
inside a funeral house
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