The first month in Indonesia is almost finished. I have already settled in the Divine Word Seminary on the island of Flores in Ledalero. I have a small, modest room, but with a beautiful view on the green and tropical forest from my balcony. I'm still learning everything: mostly Indonesian language and culture, but I also the tropical climate. Now in the rainy season ("musim hujian") it rains almost every day so it is cooler than usual, i.e. around 25 degrees Celsius.
The complex of seminary is not just a unit for seminarians, so-called „unite”, but also all the facilities, such as lecture halls, printing, library, laundry, dining room, etc. Most of the time I spend learning the Indonesian language. Although it does not seem difficult, but studying requires time and patience. So every day I learn a lot of new words and immediately practice with the community of brothers, fathers and professors. I can always ask if I do not understand something.
The green colors of the tropical forests and the view of the mountains, which are similar to the Polish Beskidy Mountains, amazes the eye and exults the heart. In the garden there are many coconut, mangoes and banana trees, as well as many other tree which I can not distinguish. In addition, the wealth of various insects also attracts my attention. I mainly think about mosquitoes that can carry diseases like dengue or malaria here. But there are also many ways how to protect yourself from insects. Small lizards ("tokek") sneak into the room. They are said to eat small insects and parasites. They make a specific noise. The people like them and mosquitoes flee from them.
I also got used to the Indonesia cuisine. Of course, every day, rice is served three times a day, but you can always find bread and jams on the table. Indonesians like to drink coffee and eat sweets, so there is no shortage of donuts and various cookies. Every day we have fresh fish from the sea, which is about 20 km from the seminary.
For the first time I had the opportunity to take a bath in the local salt water. I have never had the chance to swim in such warm and pleasant water as here. Despite the fact that it is December, the temperature of the water is so high that you can enjoy swimming. There are many new experiences waiting for me, but I am very grateful for all of them. The friendly atmosphere and goodness of the Indonesian people helps to come over all the inconveniences. Despite the fatigue that is caused by the climate change, I happily start learning a new language. Greetings from the island of Flores.
Prayers of SVD
May the darkness of sin
and the night of unbelief vanish before the light of the Word
and the Spirit of grace
and may the Heart of Jesus live
in the hearts of all people.
(Saint Arnold Janssen)