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(3) Wrapped in ashes

_MG_1947From time immemorial, Indonesia has been shaken by volcanoes and earthquakes from time to time. In Indonesia, they are more than 400. Land fluctuations occur even several times a day. Local people are accustomed to it and do not pay much attention to it. In the face of greater fluctuations in land, citizens are suddenly abandoning their homes and gathering in an open place. Seismological stations are warning about volcanic activity in advance, and the government begins to organize mass evacuation. If people obey these government instructions, accidents are minimized. However, it should be noted that rescue teams are faced with the fierce resistance of some people who stubbornly refuse to leave their homes. The latter can be understood, since during the evacuation the maraudor gang often works.

These are huge ash and dust clouds that rise at a kilometer height and follow the wind direction. The direction of the wind can change from time to time and suddenly astonish the inhabitants of the area. If, in time, it is not possible to get out of this cloud of dust, then the outcome may be fatal. The ash, together with dust, contains poisonous gases which, when inhaled, produce respiratory irritations.

_MG_1922_MG_1911In 2014, nearly one whole month, one of the most active volcanoes in Sumatra, emits airborne clouds of ash and dust, which then sowed and covered the entire area. The ash and dust layer was almost one centimeter thick, covering the entire island. Blowing down the wind, they reached the capital of Indonesia, Jakarta. Completely all flights were canceled. An emergency situation has been reported throughout Sumatra. Ash clouds reached Europe, and air pollution was recorded even in England. In this regard, even international flights were canceled.
The view of the surroundings was more than frightening. It was painted in one gray-brown color. No longer was there any place where there was no dust. The roads were covered with ash flakes, which dried up in the sun and turned into fine dust, carrying off corrosive gases.

_MG_1867Without a protective mask, a long stay in an open environment was dangerous. Corrosive gases irritate the respiratory tract, and when inhaled for a long time, the person simply suffocate from lack of air.
Those people who live at the foot of volcanoes are often suddenly surprised by eruptions.When you notice the ash clouds moving in the wind, you can not hang around anymore. The result may be fatal if you do not get out of the dust trap in time. People are struggling to get out of danger. However, if the wind follows in the same direction, avoidance can be delayed. People are losing consciousness by being at halfway. Long after the eruption, ash covers the entire area. They have dried up in the sun, and the moving transport raises a lot of dust clouds, which land after a while. And so again and again …
_MG_1874For hundreds of years, people have lived with the danger at the foot of the volcano. There they were born, grown, and spent all their life and saw the kind of benefits that can be derived from these dangers. Nature has compensated people by their generosity. Volcanic ash is a rich source of fertilizers for the soil, as a result, it is possible to get two or even three crops a year. Frequently, after the eruption of the volcano, a rainy period followed, which contributed to the absorption of ash in the soil, thereby ensuring healthy soil throughout the year. The long-awaited rain is the only savior of how to rub off the ash precipitate. Even after an eruption, ash dust reminds itself for weeks.

P.M. Jogyakarta.


(2)¬†When the feathers are flying through the air …

If ¬†some english gentlemen’s first waypoint after work is a pub to watch the football match, meanwhile the Philippines, grabs a rooster under his arm and hurries to the arena.

_MG_1485  What inspired people to watch cock fights, or in public, fighting acts between people and between beasts? The ancient Roman emperor Julius Ceaser was passionate sex fondling, and before going to love affair, ordered the youngsters to play in front of him, an theatrical performances with all sexual perversity as a human mind is able to figure out. Just as modern self-inspired by sex videos. The pursuit of power, prehistoric man took a primitive form that were more often obtained by force.

Those who came to power, they had many followers. However, those who were the losers – they were often left alone. However, both sides, ¬†losers and winners got interested in the manner, how the victory was gained. Ridden by ambition and self-pride man recalled wrestling events in front of the public. In this way, demonstrating martial art and wisdom, which, with curiosity been watched by the viewer. In ancient times those fights were called as knights fighting. Later,- ¬†duels, boxing matches and other sporting disciplines. Undeniably, spectators were invaded by a mystical power, and also some envy – to be equivalent. The show had a kind of ritual significance, too. The way in which the fight took place, how intensely… Of it, was able to predict the future outcome of the battle.¬†A special role in this kind of ritual was, when there were involved ¬†the beasts, livestock and birds which had the symbol of holiness. During the Roman Empire, cock fighting was so widespread that turned into a national sport. The fights were held in the Coliseum and to them were placed great rates.


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Where lies cockfight beginning of the history?

It does not really explored. However, the evidence preserved that, these tradition from Roma gradually emigrated to Portugal, Spain and other countries of Europe. And already with 18 centuries as a daily pleasure, cock fighting sport inherits the Far East countries. Today in many European countries such as Spain, cock fighting is prohibited. It has turned too enthusiastic. They like the Hippodrome games can be seen on the betting.

If English gentlemen’s first waypoint after work is a pub to watch the football match, meanwhile the Philippines, grabs a rooster under his arm and hurries to the arena.

Everything happens as in any sporting discipline, involving judges, instructors and fans. It is designated place where the fight will take place. It is not a fixed frame size, however, it is always withheld in an equilateral shape, Р8×8 0r 10×10 m or even bigger. It happens when the cockfight is convened spontaneously, the participants themselves forming a hedge. (In my experience such a hedge arrangement run high emotional wave and it is much more interesting). Area with a colored stripe (inconspicuous colors) is divided into two parts. In the middle, there is smaller square area where unfolds cockfight. In this middle part is not allowed to enter anyone, other than a judge.

_MG_2807_MG_1412Before starting each battle,  the judges  meet together and hold  discussion. All roosters are divided into certain categories of weight Рboth opponents more or less alike.

Judges scrutinize the rival state of health Рnails, legs, beak.., and only then give permission to participate in the battle. Great attention is paid to the spurs, it is fastened to the legs 6-8cm long, double-sided blade which before the battle has to be into the leather holster. When the roosters are prepared to fight, the judges (in other cases, their owners) keeping the cocks in both hands enter the arena. They are showcased to the public, and for a moment let loose step, to get acquainted themselves with the arena expanses. After a moment, the chief judge gives a signal and the fight can begin. First, the opponent starts getting to know each other. Still holding the cocks in the hands starts annoying each other, to a certain extent. Only when frenzied roosters remained too aggressive, leather holsters of the blades are removed and they are released into the battle field. Opponents are so frenzied that only see each other and affray begins. Like in a boxing match the judges indicate brake time, when the fight can continue or stop.

Sometimes affray it is short and opponent has a knockout in the very first round. However, there are cases where fighting persists for several rounds. Opponents are so worn out that the fight has lost vigor and the judges forced to request a break. Meanwhile, the arena is delivered a new team and the fight can continue. The outcome is only one – the opponent must be slaughtered. Usually this is done with the sharp spur of blows that remained deep scars. It happens when the opponents are so obsessed in the battle, that for a moment lose their orientation and start attacking judges.


The heat of battle. indonesia

Blows of the blade is very dangerous to humans. During fighting the frenzied cockerels sometimes jumps a meter in height. There are cases where the result of serious injuries from blade. The fight ends only when the opponent is beat, and is not able to stand up without the assistance of a judge. As long as tired opponent is still on its feet, the fight must be upheld.

The public’s reaction must to be understood. Each wrestler has placed bets. Beyond the boundaries of the arena, develops gambling front. Among the supporters takes place a fierce battle, which sometimes turns into a fight. Inexperienced participants who has contributed their share is difficult to keep track of the auction process. It is likely that in all cases he will be a loser, even if the rate falls on the winnings. It is the_MG_2786 indonesian and filipino daily life, leisure pleasure place for meeting long-unseen friends, gossip the everyday events.

The place where you can win a lot and lose even more. 

P.M. Indonesia,  Philippines


(1) Loop by loop, stitch by stitch…

Take these works of art in your hands. It’s like a colorful book, rich in Indonesian folklore. It will open up a new, – yet unexplored world.

_MG_1232¬† ¬†It does not matter which of the Indonesian provinces you’re traveling. If you ever happen to be on the scene of weaving works, then be prepared to hear the weavers, and allow them to highlight their works of art. …

“You will not find anywhere, so beautiful fabrics. Each weaver has its own secret, that is inherited from ancestors and as a mystery, it is woven into the fabric… ”

And they are right. Each province in these works, express their own geographical and ethnic contrasts in different color shades and inwoven ornaments. From the, – complex color and material combinations to a simple, – streamlined shapes.

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_MG_3337_MG_3334_MG_3345_MG_3338 _MG_3333She hummed something to herself, and gently caressed the fabric. Hers height slowly rocked,fingers deftly formed the coming thread, and every moment in between them, could see the formation of a new embroidery ornaments. Sometimes she stopped for a moment, thinking something … but after a while, once again continued to show  amazingly agile dance with her fingers.

She was creating a story about their national culture and traditions. And when the story was over, it was written into the fabric. When you observe it carefully, definitely, you will see the ancient legends and miraculous stories that reveals the truth of those days events, so rich with colors, as these fabrics are.

Traditional weaving is part of the Indonesian art. Almost in every province of the country can meet peculiar art of weaving technique, that is nurtured and passed on to future generations. In Each house can be found looms, and every family are proud to maintain their own style. Flores island, -Lombok practiced by special style of weaving, – Songket, that will not be found anywhere in Indonesia. Ground fabric is made of cotton or silk material. On that basis, are embroidered ornaments of gold or silver threads, which particularly highlights its contours.

_MG_3353_MG_3324Basically, everything is made by hand. The fabric is woven on looms, and other textile materials, ornaments, symbols are embroidered by hand. Filing thereof together symbols, Indonesian believe in the magical forces, as they protect people from the evil spirits and diseases. Special products are embroidered for festivals and traditional ceremonies. Particular importance is underlined to the dyeing process. These are natural dyes made of the leaves of Indigo plant. The basic color, and the oldest is blue, mixed with molasses sugar and lime. As the second oldest dye is brown, named РSoga.

The old artists have found ways to mix basic colors in all kinds of proportion, thus obtaining rich color tones. Maintains various types of dyeing processes. For a fixed period, the fabric is immersed in the dye bath. The darker the color needed, the longer is dyeing time. In the dye bath, the fabric holds the basic tones. When the fabric is ready, it is dried and it goes into the hands of the artist. With quite primitive techniques, the artist starts to create a drawing on the fabric. Knowing the proportion of the dye, the artist produced any shade, the acquisition of which is kept as a secret.

P.M. Flores. Indonesia