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Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Please, Be Civilized!

Disadvantaged Balinese will serve a charity *censored name* dinner at *censored place* on *censored date*, following 10-weeks of hospitality training in partnership with *censored name* . The seven students of this pilot program have never had formal schooling and most were illiterate before they joined *censored name* vocational training program....

Their training includes setting tables, pouring drinks, serving meals, taking orders and clearing plates. At the [the event], they will serve 'real' guests for the first time.

How delightful. A group of "disadvantage" and "illiterate" people serving "real guests". Forgive me for being furious, but it's my people you happen to talk about. Sorry, I meant "you happen to humbled, humiliate, and disregard."

Here's another one from Tripadvisor:
I was uncomfortable to be overlooked by people less fortunate than ourselves, especially when sitting on the verandah and the livestock was very noisy, especially the roosters and dogs.

Sorry for screaming this out loud, but what is wrong with you tourists anyway? The only thing we ever done was not living according to the western standard, why do you have to get so bitchy about it? Sorry we don't read latin alphabet though we can read the stars and suns and well predict on what happen in the future, sorry we have coffee grounds in our cups though it tastes waaaay more delicious that way, sorry our dogs run loose and have darn fun with their lives instead of hopelessly obedient and eat dry pathetic dog food, sorry we don't watch jersey shore (like it'll do us good anyway). Your ways aint perfect as well.

I am so upset on hearing (western) tourists complain on how "not nice" everything is in Bali, and so upset to hear we're constantly considered as second class citizen. In our own country. Our ways are good and it works perfectly with our way of life. But then villas are being built, hotels are being made, and our ways is forcefully change to comply according to "western" standard. Try living in our shoes, try eating with your hands instead of with fork and knife and see how it works for you.

And was it really our mistake? I didn't see any Bule hesitate on obscuring the lowest price possible for strategic piece of land in Bali. And I didn't see they care what the local Balinese will do with the money, which in most cases being spent to oblivion in a matter of weeks. It's the spanish inquisition all over again, a crate of aztec gold being bartered for a handful of useless beads. I rarely (if ever) see tourist ask whether the hotel/villa/whatever they currently stay have building+business permit or not, and whether it's catered by locals. Like the example above, why not just enrolling the "disadvantage" people in courses and give them the job? I thought there's rule that apply a certain minimum numbers of local people to work in businesses to ensure job growth. Did the tourists pay attention to that? Of course not. They're too busy saving the cattle from inhumane treatment. How nice to know how worthless we are.

Sorry but I do know what I'm talking about. Too many people build so-called philanthropy organization in Bali just for the sake of cashing money. I was in one such institute as the education manager and I ran away promptly when I realize the money went more to build the owner's luxury villa. I met a school principal recently (caucasian male), along with my friend (who happen to know him) and a dutch lady. He didn't even give me a glance and speaks continuously with the dutch girl. What a gentleman. I have more to share, including the facts that working tourists get paid many times more than the locals, albeit they have the same skill. And you're blaming us for being illiterate and having "disadvantages".

If you want something civilized, go to a standard western countries instead of loitering and complaining in a developing country such as Indonesia. If you want to come here, please don't f*** with our way of life and stop whining around, especially if you do not do anything to rectify what you think is wrong with us. You're the guest and not the host, remember?

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