motorcycles, bintang and a tropical storm – so this is christmas.

Up at 5.30… Good morning BK!

Yesterday I remembered how to ride a motorbike. A little wobbly at first, learning to change gears… I picked it up fast… I’ve done this before. Light rain falls on my hands as I zoomed around a car park that was being resurfaced – practicing going up and down in gear. The guards eyes sparkled as he watches me, laughing at me… he thinks I don’t know where to park, he laughs harder when Sara tells him I’m learning how to ride. I leave Sara at work and I drove along the coast. Up and over the hill around a corner onto our little street and I stop the bike where the rice fields lay on either side of the bike, and I breath in the cool wet air… the sun hasn’t gotten too hot yet, it’s still very early… kids ride past on their way to school, they all wave, big smiles on their faces, I wave back.

The day went by slowly, beers at the hotel, a drive to a nearby town and a visit to a supermarket, fish for lunch, too full to eat dinner. A very strange Indonesian class in the evening. Sleep early… this heat is exhausting.

Today I woke early again it’s Christmas eve in the tropics, the sound of rain on our roof, the gecko’s on the wall, the smell of wet rice fields and clean air all around.

Our house leaks a lot. There is water everywhere, but I don’t mind… I few times with the mop over the floor and I give up, the rain is still heavy and coming in fast – there are a few sacrifices you make when you have a garden in the middle of your house and no walls – it’s just a little wet…I worked and watched the rain, watched the little lady who lives behind us in her little bamboo hut… she makes a fire, feeds her animals and potters about in the rain. She doesn’t speak much, she just laughs when we try to speak to her… telling us she often takes water from the well in our backyard.

Now I sit here in my living room feeling the air get stickier by the minute, watching our new water feature as the rain comes through the roof. I hand washed sheets and towels this morning – it must be good for the arm muscles… Might take a while to dry here, but life’s slow here – there is no rush.

I sit at my computer and write this and other things  a triangular cardboard box of apple tea (selected from the wide range of random snacks on sale at the roadside kiosks) in one hand rediscovering music I haven’t listened to in years and watching my little friend the frog jumping along the floor… So, this is Christmas.

One more sleep until Santa comes, it’s a good thing he’s got my new address.


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