Today Indonesia celebrates her 65th Independence Day after proclaiming its freedom from Japan (Japan took over Indonesia from Netherlands occupation in 1942) on August 17, 1945. Still young compare to some other countries but we’ve surely come a long way. Unfortunately, because the day fall during the Ramadhan month, seems like there won’t be too much of traditional celebrations going on, sadly much like last year. For fun, here are my top 10 reasons why I love my country:
- My rich cultural background. Yes, I’m Indonesian but when people asks me where I’m from and I asked them to guessed they all failed miserably. My father is from Ambon one of the most beautiful island in Indonesia that I have sadly yet to visit, while my mother is originally came from Manadonese descents but I was born in Makassar. My family had hopped around quite awhile growing up which is something that I will forever treasure.
- The foods – need I say more? With so many cultures there are too many delicious foods here.
- The beaches and underwater wonders. Granted I haven’t visit all of Indonesia beaches but with over 17,000 islands you bet there are still a lot of virgins white sands beaches around. I don’t dive but I’ve heard and have seen so many breathtaking views from our underwater ecology like the ones in Manado and other islands. Diving is on my bucket list for sure and checking out these fantastic beaches. Can’t wait for my trip to Rote island this November!
- Living cost – depends on your chosen lifestyle – but moderately living cost in Indonesia is still considered much cheaper than in other countries.
- The spas – oh how I love the spas here. From the fancy swanky ones to the ones that is dirt cheap.
- Handicrafts and jewelries. Again, with so many different cultures Indonesia really have so much to offer when it comes to its traditional handicrafts. Some of my favorite necklaces are gems coming from Borneo.
- Batik and other traditional weave textiles from all over Indonesia, not only beautiful but also timeless piece with rich historical culture stories behinds each patterns.
- Habitat of some of the world’s endangered species such as the orangutans, komodo dragon, etc. I remember growing up in Borneo and seeing our little ‘neighbors’ the orangutans swinging from tree to tree. Those were precious moments that I will never forget.
- Despite the glitz and glam of big city such as Jakarta there are still people who live and dress like this in Irian. It shows cultural diversity. Traditions still plays important roles in plenty of Indonesian people lives.
- The smiles – Indonesians are generally a very friendly people. Yes, of course there are bad apples everywhere but in general people here are friendly and smiles a lot.
Yes, as a developing country there are still so much work to be done to bring this country into a better future, there are still things that irked me to death but I still love this country with every ounce of my being. Happy birthday, Indonesia! The song above still brought tears to my eyes – try listening to it when you’re thousands miles away from home! 😀