Today I was invited outside the city to lunch. We drove for about 30 minutes down several dirt roads. Surrounding us were plantations of various sorts.
We arrived at a house on stilts built above a narrow, spring-fed reservoir filled with fish. Three people were fishing.I
After fishing for a few minutes, lunch was served--rice, chicken, a spinach-like vegetable and fish of course. The food was called "yellow food" in Indonesian and was delicious.
The owner of the establishment had a son wanted to be a police officer and liked the USA so I made him an honorary Redhawks.
We said goodbyes and headed out. As we traveled back we stopped to speak with a farmer who showed us pepper up close.
The farmer was also tapping rubber trees for latex. I was thrilled because I explain this process every year to almost every cultures class.
After the tree is scored it will run for about six hours into a small cup. The latex is then collected in larger tubs where it slowly congealed and then hardens.
Of course after seeing all this in action, I asked to try it.
As I walked back to the car, the farmer was climbing a tall coconut tree. He descended with several coconuts--one for each member of our group. He swayed down and hacked the coconuts open with his machete. Suddenly there were straws and spoons as well.
Because this farmer was clearly a quality producer in the community contributor he he became a Redhawks too.
I left with the same deep appreciation of Indonesian hospitality I have felt thought the trip and a deeper understanding of where things I use regularly in the US come from.