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    Java, no not Starbuck’s

    June 23rd, 2007 by steve

    There isn’t much in Jakarta to be excited about. It’s a big, hectic capital city made of some skyscrapers (the haves) but mostly sprawling dirty village (the have nots). Tony Roma’s was our only joy. Everything is flown in from the States so it was all scrumptous to us. Of course it cost as much as our flights there. Then we headed inland to Yogyakarta where there are temples abound. We got back onto the back of a motorbike and explored the numerous Buddhist temples nearby including Prambanan and Borobudur. Here we saw the poverty of the people were evident. Men would lay on their becaks (rickshaw style bikes) waiting for any fare to come along. They’ll take you across town for half a buck. But there’s too many of them so if they don’t get anyone then they don’t eat. There are women carrying gallons of juice and pots of rice strapped to their back while rambling the streets hoping to make a few cents to live off of. A local told us that the government is hopelessly corrupt and leaves the people to fend for themselves. Those with a bit of land could atleast farm but those without were left to their own devices, thus the high crime in cities. The people are instantly suspicious of any local with money. They didn’t even care about the recent Indonesian killed in a university in the States because anyone overseas got there by corrupt means. We found ourselves opting to eat at the street carts just to spread the money around. For 50cents we got some pretty tasty dishes and lots of smiles.
    –Mary

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