It’s mid-semester and I’ve just finished midterm exams! Time has flown by, and I am still learning, and experiencing new things every day and enjoying every minute of it. There are days when the heat and the occasional bumps in the road get to me but all of it is just a part of living in a foreign country. I’d have to say that I feel either confused or embarrassed by some sort of miscommunication just about every day and I think at this point it’s best to do as the Indonesian’s do, laugh and smile! One of the general cultural traits given to Indonesians is that smiles and laughter are common expressions of their embarrassment, which I think is a great attitude. Although, if you almost get hit by a motorbike on the road the last thing you would want to see is a cheeky smirk. But anyways, the point is sometimes you just have to take yourself less seriously and laugh it off and look on the brighter side of things. I am in Indonesia studying, I’ve met amazing people, I’ve done amazing things, I’ve eaten great food, I got to miss some of the Canadian winter and I now am basking in tropical heat, what is there not to smile about?
Speaking of things that make me smile, over the past month I have enjoyed a trip to a village to teach children and have performed in a play. UGM students from the geography faculty brought me and my friend Viv along on a visit to a community called Gunung Gaja to help with their “geography on vacation” program. The purpose of the trip was to educate elementary school students about respecting the environment. We basically just took the kids on a hike and played educational games. The kids were all very sweet and I hope they learned something because I’ve seen too many parks and beaches littered with garbage.
I have also been busy practising for a play about beach safety which I performed about two weeks ago, I played Sinta. It was a lot of fun and I got to meet great people!