Photo of the Week
Photo Title


WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 44853
    [post_author] => 39
    [post_date] => 2011-05-12 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 2011-05-12 06:00:00
    [post_content] => 

There is a meloncholy to leaving a place that seems to permeate your entire being. A mixture of anticipation and lonliness, accomplishment and fear that hit you almost simultaneously until they create a feeling of their own-homogeneous yet seperate, existing in duality with one another. Looking back I've realized that I will leave so much in this country: fears and struggles from home dissolved by the power of the experience, parts of myself once ingrained but now abandoned.Until now, letting go for me has always been synonymous with losing something. When I thought of letting go I thought of giving up, surrendering before defeat. Over the course of this trip I've realized that letting go is the natural state of things. We are always changing as people, constantly letting go of parts of ourselves. There is a piece of myself in every place I've gone, a fragment broken off from the whole like a block of wood that changes with each flick of the axe. We all have imperfections, knots in the wood of our lives that rather than hold us back give us opportunities for change. The world is built from transformations; static characters are never the heroes and yet I've always found myself fighting against it. By resisting change I thought that I could prevent the things around me from changing. But trying to freeze moments like popsicles proves difficult in the Indonesian sun. I'll always miss the way things were but more than anything I've learned to look forward to the way things will be. I've learned to never settle for simply being content, to never allow for apathy in a world with so many choices. When you let go of something it's never really lost. What you let go of is only a lifeless shell containing the transformation within.

[post_title] => Transformation [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => transformation [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2011-05-12 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2011-05-12 06:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=44853 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 356 [name] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 [slug] => indonesia-semester-spring-2011 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 356 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 256 [count] => 96 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 19.1 [cat_ID] => 356 [category_count] => 96 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 [category_nicename] => indonesia-semester-spring-2011 [category_parent] => 256 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2011/indonesia-semester-spring-2011/ ) ) [category_links] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 )

Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011

View post

Transformation

Melissa Kolano,Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011

Description

There is a meloncholy to leaving a place that seems to permeate your entire being. A mixture of anticipation and lonliness, accomplishment and fear that hit you almost simultaneously until they create a feeling of their own-homogeneous yet seperate, existing in duality with one another. Looking back I’ve realized that I will leave so much […]

Posted On

05/12/11

Author

Melissa Kolano

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 44889
    [post_author] => 39
    [post_date] => 2011-05-09 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00
    [post_content] => 

I had the great privilege of spending last evening with the Indonesia students and instructors.

I arrived in time to hear them share their reflections on the past three months - how they had been challenged, how they had build a community, how they had laughed, and the many ways in which they had grown.

As we worked our way through the group, I was struck by their gratitude and humility, and the degree to which they had taken responsibility for their own learning. Each described a profound experience, and each for different reasons. We sat and listened to one another, with the kind of attention and support one would expect to see at the beginning of a trip, but not always at the end. They were present and alive in so many ways.

I got to see the final ISP presentation by Alex, who divided us into teams and had us draw from memory all of the traditional homes we had slept in through our three months here. Balinese compounds, traditional Torajan Tongkonans, the simple huts of the nomadic Wana, and the stilted houses on water with the Bajau. She then led us through a slideshow tracing the architectural styles of the three month journey.

We were then treated to wonderful slideshow by Anna which had everyone in tears and laughter - a wonderful mix of images that highlighted their greatest feats and friendship. Each of us has a copy so no doubt you will see these too!

Finally, Keenan performed a wonderful song that spoke to every person in the group with such wit and humor. His second version included all of the interesting people they met along the way. As he broke into the chorus, the whole group joined in with gusto.

Needless to say, it was an evening filled with laughter which carried long into the night, and well into the morning, as they packed their bags to prepare for the ride to the airport. There were tears, yes, as this new family parted ways, yet a sense of connectedness within this group that I am confident will transcend the physical space that separates them.

I feel very privileged to have spent time with this group of students, and to have been part of this process. Thank you for sharing your sons and daughters with us. You should be very proud of everything they have done.

Everyone boarded their flights without problems this afternoon and it left on time with everyone looking forward to the next chapter of their journey.

Enjoy your reunions!

Best regards,

Jamie Woodall

Indonesia Semester Program Director

[post_title] => The Indonesia Students are Homeward Bound! [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => the-indonesia-students-are-homeward-bound [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2011-05-09 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=44889 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 356 [name] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 [slug] => indonesia-semester-spring-2011 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 356 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 256 [count] => 96 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 19.1 [cat_ID] => 356 [category_count] => 96 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 [category_nicename] => indonesia-semester-spring-2011 [category_parent] => 256 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2011/indonesia-semester-spring-2011/ ) ) [category_links] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 )

Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011

View post

The Indonesia Students are Homeward Bound!

Jamie Woodall,Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011

Description

I had the great privilege of spending last evening with the Indonesia students and instructors. I arrived in time to hear them share their reflections on the past three months – how they had been challenged, how they had build a community, how they had laughed, and the many ways in which they had grown. […]

Posted On

05/9/11

Author

Jamie Woodall

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 44923
    [post_author] => 39
    [post_date] => 2011-05-06 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00
    [post_content] => 

What I’ll miss about Indonesia.

It is hard to say what I won’t. I’ve grown accustomed to the beautiful smiles and the “hello misters”.But when it comes down to it, it is the simple subtleties of everyday life I’ll miss.

I’ll miss the delicate Balinese flower offerings offered every morning. The smell of incense in the air.

I’ll miss the fresh papaya and lime I had each morning in the Bandas.

I’ll miss the never ending mission to find and eat Durian on every island we visited.

I’ll miss the guesthouse ibus and paks who made us feel welcome in their guesthouses, bringing us breakfast and tea-always with a smile.

I’ll miss the spicy sambals freshly created by our porters during our Tana Torajan stay.

I’ll miss the lush green rice paddies I woke to and practiced yoga by.

I’ll miss my homestay mothers laughing at me whenever I made a mistake and the way they patiently fixed whatever I had done wrong.

I’ll miss hearing the sound of the gamelan as I meander down a street or past a temple.

I’ll miss the way Indonesians always know when it will rain.

I’ll miss the diversity of religions, cultures, and languages.

I’ll miss the communal respect for all ways of life.

[post_title] => The Last Yak [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => the-last-yak [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2011-05-06 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=44923 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 356 [name] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 [slug] => indonesia-semester-spring-2011 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 356 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 256 [count] => 96 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 19.1 [cat_ID] => 356 [category_count] => 96 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 [category_nicename] => indonesia-semester-spring-2011 [category_parent] => 256 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2011/indonesia-semester-spring-2011/ ) ) [category_links] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 )

Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011

View post

The Last Yak

Monique Kelmenson,Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011

Description

What I’ll miss about Indonesia. It is hard to say what I won’t. I’ve grown accustomed to the beautiful smiles and the “hello misters”.But when it comes down to it, it is the simple subtleties of everyday life I’ll miss. I’ll miss the delicate Balinese flower offerings offered every morning. The smell of incense in […]

Posted On

05/6/11

Author

Monique Kelmenson

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 44924
    [post_author] => 39
    [post_date] => 2011-05-06 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00
    [post_content] => 

We were supposed to take a 12 hour boat ride from Kaledupa to Bau Baubut we ended up spending over 30 hours on multiple different boats.

Let me explain. We left Sampella on a Monday at 6am on motorizedcanoes and traveled for 40 minutes to a port on Kaledupa. We boardedthe next boat at 7am. The boat was supposed to leave Kaledupa at 10ambut didn't end up leaving until 1pm. At around 5pm the water startedto get really rough and there were times when the boat felt perpendicular with the water. It was like the last ten minutes of themovie "The Perfect Storm". So many people got sea sick and a lucky fewturned green, literally!!!

Around 9pm we docked at a port and quicklyfound out that it was not Bau Bau. The crew decided that the waterswere to rough and that we would not be able to make it to Bau Bautonight so, we had to dock at the small town port.

We got off the boat in hopes of finding something to eat for dinner.
Unfortunately there were no restaurants in sight and we were still allfeeling pretty sick. We ended up eating fried rice in a women's livingroom. How did that happen? One of our leaders at the time, Diego, usedhis charm to have these local women order food for us at a restaurant,go on their motorcycles to get it, and bring it back to us to eat intheir house. Yes, that is what happened. After eating our "nasigoreng", we went back to the boat and pulled out our sleeping mats andcamped out on the boat for the night. We were assured that it wouldbe safe and that it was our best option.Everyone who had ear plugsput them to good use and I was equipped with my luxury eye mask thatallowed me to get an optimal slumber.


At 5:30 am on Tuesday morning the boat left the small town port in
hopes of reaching Bau Bau. The ride started out well because the seaswere pretty smooth. Around 1pm, we wereable to see a town that had two-story buildings and we knew we werealmost in Bau Bau. Once I stepped off the boat I felt like I was stillon it, swaying side to side.

We quickly made it to our guest house and headed out on our own to getlunch. I HAD A MANGO!!! It was literally the most amazing mango I haveever had. It was so sweet and juicy and delicious. I cannot evenexplain how wonderful it was - I got three more to eat for breakfast,lunch and dinner the next day. I also had this amazing peanut butterdoughnut. It is like a fried pork bun but instead of pork it hassmashed, extra crunchy, sweet peanut stuff in it. These two food itemsalone made the journey worth it.That 30 hour adventure wasn’t even the longest amount of time we spenttraveling on a boat this semester in Indonesia. The 36 hour Pelni ridefrom Bau Bau to Bandernia was longer but this trip from Kaledupa toBau Bau tested all of our love for the ocean.

[post_title] => Kaledupa to Bau Bau [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => kaledupa-to-bau-bau [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2011-05-06 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=44924 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 356 [name] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 [slug] => indonesia-semester-spring-2011 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 356 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 256 [count] => 96 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 19.1 [cat_ID] => 356 [category_count] => 96 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 [category_nicename] => indonesia-semester-spring-2011 [category_parent] => 256 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2011/indonesia-semester-spring-2011/ ) ) [category_links] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 )

Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011

View post

Kaledupa to Bau Bau

Julia Cole,Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011

Description

We were supposed to take a 12 hour boat ride from Kaledupa to Bau Baubut we ended up spending over 30 hours on multiple different boats. Let me explain. We left Sampella on a Monday at 6am on motorizedcanoes and traveled for 40 minutes to a port on Kaledupa. We boardedthe next boat at 7am. […]

Posted On

05/6/11

Author

Julia Cole

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 44919
    [post_author] => 39
    [post_date] => 2011-05-06 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00
    [post_content] => 

The Ten Best Places we Slept on the Indonesia Semester

1. In a bamboo house on stilts with a family of sea gypsies

2. On a tree platform high up in the jungle canopy

3. Sardine-style in a hermit’s lakeside hut deep inside a nature preserve

4. On a deserted beach in the Spice Islands in a shelter that we made ourselves

5. In a traditional Balinese-style compound6.

6. In a Torajan-style tongkonan house surrounded by rice terraces and ancestor spirits

7. In the middle of the ocean on a giant Pelni ship

8. Emergency bivouac on a vomit-splattered boat using life jackets for pillows

9. In jungle camps with indigenous, forest-dwelling Wana people

10. In a lovely little guesthouse by the sea just a stone’s throw from an active volcano

[post_title] => The Ten Best Places we Slept on the Indonesia Semester [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => the-ten-best-places-we-slept-on-the-indonesia-semester [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2011-05-06 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=44919 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 356 [name] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 [slug] => indonesia-semester-spring-2011 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 356 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 256 [count] => 96 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 19.1 [cat_ID] => 356 [category_count] => 96 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 [category_nicename] => indonesia-semester-spring-2011 [category_parent] => 256 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2011/indonesia-semester-spring-2011/ ) ) [category_links] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 )

Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011

View post

The Ten Best Places we Slept on the Indonesia Semester

Katie Hagel,Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011

Description

The Ten Best Places we Slept on the Indonesia Semester 1. In a bamboo house on stilts with a family of sea gypsies 2. On a tree platform high up in the jungle canopy 3. Sardine-style in a hermit’s lakeside hut deep inside a nature preserve 4. On a deserted beach in the Spice Islands […]

Posted On

05/6/11

Author

Katie Hagel

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 44921
    [post_author] => 39
    [post_date] => 2011-05-06 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00
    [post_content] => 

Thank you for showing me your sparkling pink photo album. For telling me about elephants. For the post bedbug bamboo shower. For explaining color. For the Evil Water Buffalo. For rice paddy yoga. For loving children so thouroughly. For telling me some San Francisco musts. For that thunderstorm in the doorway. For having hyperspells, and administering chill pills.

Thank you for your sweatshirt at the hermits cabin. For always being on board with a mango and peanut butter jelly sandwich lunch. For giving me the queen, and for taking her. For making emptying my stomach into a dog bowl less lonely. For night swimming. For refusing hand hugs. For raging in our room on the overnight pelni. For our cholo cholo and kenari eggplant.

Thank you for drawing your other worlds. For knowling all the lyrics to "On a Boat." For my green dinosaur silly band. For our bonfire and failed hammock slumber. For canoeing to and from the boathouse, even with our broken paddle. For buying peanut pancakes in Suwai. For Supermega grand tishu. For telling me about the stars. For, listen and monster. For your helmet photograph.

Thank you for burning the soles of our feet together. For eating chocolate fruit in the stream. For Humbolt Fog. For abbreving. For your tanning lotion. For your first topless night. For guitar theory and the diversity of a D. For being my sea kayak partner through the risks I woudln't take. For witches on broomsticks.

Thank you for managing us in our student expedition. For your freestyle poolside singing. For our massage date. For our food challenge victory. For your midflight chicken. For your story of Winslow. For your spontaneous paranoia of poison ivy. For our Kafe love affairs.

I've missed a lot. I know. It's been great guys.

[post_title] => The Only People for me are the Mad Ones [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => the-only-people-for-me-are-the-mad-ones [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2011-05-06 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=44921 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 356 [name] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 [slug] => indonesia-semester-spring-2011 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 356 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 256 [count] => 96 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 19.1 [cat_ID] => 356 [category_count] => 96 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 [category_nicename] => indonesia-semester-spring-2011 [category_parent] => 256 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2011/indonesia-semester-spring-2011/ ) ) [category_links] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 )

Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011

View post

The Only People for me are the Mad Ones

Kiara Segal,Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011

Description

Thank you for showing me your sparkling pink photo album. For telling me about elephants. For the post bedbug bamboo shower. For explaining color. For the Evil Water Buffalo. For rice paddy yoga. For loving children so thouroughly. For telling me some San Francisco musts. For that thunderstorm in the doorway. For having hyperspells, and […]

Posted On

05/6/11

Author

Kiara Segal

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 44941
    [post_author] => 39
    [post_date] => 2011-05-03 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00
    [post_content] => 

Dear Parents and Friends,

By now you may have heard news of a Worldwide Travel Advisory issued by the US State Department. There have been no specific travel warnings issued for Indonesia. The group is currently staying on Nusa Lembongan, a small and quiet Hindu island off the southeastern coast of Bali. They plan to return to Ubud tomorrow for 3 days, and then travel to Sideman for the final 3 nights of the program.

The instructors are aware of the news and travel alert. Program Director, Jamie Woodall, is in constant communication with the group throughout each day, and will inform the instructors of any updates. They will continue to be vigilant in regards to safety issues and avoid any public demonstrations per our safety protocols. We do not, however, anticipate any anti-American backlash in the Bali region since it is very US-friendly and has been a strong partner in anti-terrorism efforts.

We will continue to monitor the situation closely and make Yak Yak updates as needed.

The students are in excellent spirits and enjoying this final leg of their student-led expedition!

[post_title] => Travel advisory [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => travel-advisory [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2011-05-03 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=44941 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 356 [name] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 [slug] => indonesia-semester-spring-2011 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 356 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 256 [count] => 96 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 19.1 [cat_ID] => 356 [category_count] => 96 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 [category_nicename] => indonesia-semester-spring-2011 [category_parent] => 256 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2011/indonesia-semester-spring-2011/ ) ) [category_links] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 )

Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011

View post

Travel advisory

Jamie Woodall,Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011

Description

Dear Parents and Friends, By now you may have heard news of a Worldwide Travel Advisory issued by the US State Department. There have been no specific travel warnings issued for Indonesia. The group is currently staying on Nusa Lembongan, a small and quiet Hindu island off the southeastern coast of Bali. They plan to […]

Posted On

05/3/11

Author

Jamie Woodall

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 44960
    [post_author] => 39
    [post_date] => 2011-05-02 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00
    [post_content] => 

Dear Parents and Friends,

It’s hard to believe but we’re already in the middle of the Final Expedition phase of the program. The students have full control of the itinerary, the daily schedule and our budget money. It’s A LOT of work arrange a travel program for fifteen people. Trust us, we know! The students have to work hard to meet the diverse needs of our group members and ensure that everyone’s voices are heard. They need language skills, cultural skills, logistical skills, facilitation skills, communication skills, negotiation skills, bargaining and budgeting skills in order to pull this off. Arlo, Naldo and I are SO proud of how the students are handling this huge responsibility. They are all committed to the group and to the task and it is a joy to see them shining as they put the skills that we have worked so hard to help them develop into practice. They are definitely solidly in the “Performing” phase of group development!

Of course, there’s an intellectual component to the final expedition as well. Each day, a different student will have the opportunity to lead an activity, discussion or workshop. They can initiate a conversation that they would like to have with the group, present a project that they have been working on over the course of the Semester, teach the group a new skill, lead an activity or assign a reading and facilitate a discussion.

So far, the student-led discussions have been excellent. Emily, Keenan, Monique, Kiara, Marjorie and Julia were the first students to step into the spotlight. Emily, our art student, led us in a fun collaborative art activity on our first night back in Ubud. She gave us a few minutes to draw freely on a large piece of butcher paper. Then, we all moved down one spot and she had us turn someone else’s scribbles into a character. She instructed us to come up with a few adjectives describing our character and then give him or her a name. We then went around the circle describing our character to the group. We all know each other pretty well by now and it was fun to see how people’s personalities crept into their descriptions of their characters.

Next, Keenan shared some local myths and legends with us and had us break into groups and work together to come up with a myth describing a natural phenomenon that we had encountered on the program. We then shared our myths with the group. People got really creative and came up with some pretty impressive myths. There was also a lot of laughter, of course! We never got to hear the end of Langdon’s myth. It just went on and on and on and became more and more convoluted and bizarre. He has promised to finish it for us the next time we’re all sitting around a fire. We’re all looking forward to that!

For her student-led discussion, Monique asked the group to talk about how it felt being back in Ubud, Bali--a developed, touristy area and the town where our journey began--after so many weeks of rugged travel in Indonesia. As Ubud was our first stop after our program orientation, returning to Ubud at the end of the program enabled us to see and feel how much we have grown and changed. Monique’s discussion provided a valuable opportunity to reflect on this together. It was a nice segue way into the final “Transference” portion of our program, which will take place in the mountains of Sideman, Bali during the last four days of the course.

A beautiful beach at sunset provided a fitting location for Kiara’s discussion, which centered on the importance of religion and the role of God. We spent a good hour and a half talking about God and religion both in terms of our own personal beliefs and practices as well as in terms of the people, cultures and religions that we have encountered on this program. Of course, we didn’t come to any conclusions regarding the role of religion in human society or the existence of God. In true Dragons spirit, we left the discussion table with more questions than answers. Dragons programs force students to think hard about who they are, what really matters to them and their place in the world. As Rilke wrote, they must “learn to love the questions themselves” and “live [their] way into the answer.”

Julia and Marjorie's activities both involved reflecting on the trip and all that we've experienced together as well as how we're going to take home what we learned. Julia had us co-create a mural of our trip while reminiscing about each experience. So many happy memories . . . and the trip isn't even over yet! Marjorie led a discussion in which students shared about how their priorities have changed during the course of this program and how things might be different once they return home. It's great to see the students moving organically into the transference portion of the program and beginning to process and integrate all that they have experienced this semester in Indonesia.

I have been feeling a bit under the weather, so I skipped out on the afternoon’s snorkeling activity. Anyone who has spent any time with me at all would know that I’d have to be really drained to say no to an outdoor activity, especially one involving water and boats! Perhaps I’m just tired after three months of hard traveling or perhaps I just got a bit overwhelmed with emotion thinking about the end of the program. I’m not gonna lie--it WILL feel good to relax when this is all over! But, I’ll be REALLY sorry to see these students go. We’ve been through so much together and it’s impossible not to get attached. These days, every time I look at one of them, I see a melting ice cream cone. Time is running out and I want to make sure that I give them everything that I’ve got and share with them everything that I want to share with them before they go, so that they’re ready to go off and swing the world by its tail. It’s going to be hard for Arlo and Naldo and I to send them back but we feel confident that we’re sending them out into the world stronger, more compassionate and with a greater sense of who they are and what they are capable of. I’m so curious to see where they’ll take it from here! I am very grateful to have been a part of their growth and learning and I wish them the best of everything in all of their endeavors.

[post_title] => Student-Led Discussions [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => student-led-discussions [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2011-05-02 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=44960 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 356 [name] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 [slug] => indonesia-semester-spring-2011 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 356 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 256 [count] => 96 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 19.1 [cat_ID] => 356 [category_count] => 96 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 [category_nicename] => indonesia-semester-spring-2011 [category_parent] => 256 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2011/indonesia-semester-spring-2011/ ) ) [category_links] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 )

Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011

View post

Student-Led Discussions

Katie Hagel,Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011

Description

Dear Parents and Friends, It’s hard to believe but we’re already in the middle of the Final Expedition phase of the program. The students have full control of the itinerary, the daily schedule and our budget money. It’s A LOT of work arrange a travel program for fifteen people. Trust us, we know! The students […]

Posted On

05/2/11

Author

Katie Hagel

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 44961
    [post_author] => 39
    [post_date] => 2011-05-02 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00
    [post_content] => 

Few people in the world have heard of the island of Seram, though it is a proper vast landmass (6600 square miles, bigger than Connecticut)situated between New Guinea and the Philippines. The northern part of the island, where we were happily ensconced, is largely composed of limestone. Like many tropical presentations of limestone and karst, the landscape is composed of steep, bladelike peaks and massifs, deep valleys, and caves.

One such cave is Guasawai, an hours’ walk through dense tropical forest. We decide to make an expedition after breakfast one morning. Accompanied by our doughty guides Pace and Buce, we climb steadily up a valley, along crisscrossing trails. This section of the forest had been logged several decades ago, so there are few truly gigantic trees. Several cocoa trees had been planted here and there, and now form part of the understory. Pace uses his short, razor-sharp machete (called a parang) to lop a couple of the ripest fruits off the branches. We smash them open against tree trunks and eat the juicy, sweet-sour pith, spitting out the seeds. You can bite into the seeds if you like, for an intense bitter chocolate taste, and when you spit, the seed fragments are a rich purple color.

Giant Golden Orb Weaver spiders decorate gaps between the trees with their shimmering webs – the toughest spider-silk in the world. Buce pauses occasionally to point out stick insects and colorful tesseratomid bugs.

The last approach to the cave is very steep, with crumbly rocks and slippery roots underfoot. A great yawning mouth in the Earth, studded with limestone teeth, exhales clouds of bats, alarmed at our approach. Fig trees dangle their ropy roots around the sides of the cave, and Pace scurries up one of these with the agility of a lizard.

The entrance chamber is vaulted like a cathedral dome, and several agitated bats swoop around above us, chittering. The walls are smooth and powdery, and the rich smell of guano permeates all. There is a sheer wall about six feet high that we have to scale, and our hands encounter the soft, greasy coating of guano on the rocks. We pull ourselves up and begin a crawl through a steep tunnel. In here the sides of the cave are highly sculpted with projections and recesses. There are several gigantic huntsman spiders here, with legspans over five inches. They are devoted mothers, carrying broad flat egg sacs.

We have to duck under a low ridge, and catch sight of a gecko peering around at us. The air becomes more dank and stale. Tiny cobweb spiders, the cousins of black widows, spin their tangly traps under tiny overhangs. Broad, flat whip scorpions scuttle across the ceilings, quick as lightning, holding their powerful claws folded across their faces.

We reach the furthest chamber, a vast column of space within the rock. Dozens of pairs of eyes shine down at us from the ceiling – this is the bats’ headquarters. The ground is spongy with guano. A small vinegaroon makes his cautious way through the dung landscape, looking for prey. Here and there a bulbous stalactite dangles, and a gigantic stone like an obelisk fills one side of the chamber. Its sides are scored as if by a colossal fork.

A short guano lecture seems in order, as the stuff is literally dropping out of the air all around us. I start in on the amazing nitrogen-carrying capacity of uric acid, its use as fertilizer, its economic importance, hoping to lead up to the historical importance of guano in the presidency of Millard Fillmore, but some of the students become distracted and disenchanted by the steady shower landing on their heads and clothes.

We begin our exodus, past the watching cave creatures, back into the world of sunlight. Given the amount of rainfall and the composition of the mountains, there must be dozens of such caves in the area, awaiting discovery and exploration.

[post_title] => The Cave of Seram [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => the-cave-of-seram [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2011-05-02 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=44961 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 356 [name] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 [slug] => indonesia-semester-spring-2011 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 356 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 256 [count] => 96 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 19.1 [cat_ID] => 356 [category_count] => 96 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 [category_nicename] => indonesia-semester-spring-2011 [category_parent] => 256 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2011/indonesia-semester-spring-2011/ ) ) [category_links] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 )

Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011

View post

The Cave of Seram

Arlo Pelegrin,Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011

Description

Few people in the world have heard of the island of Seram, though it is a proper vast landmass (6600 square miles, bigger than Connecticut)situated between New Guinea and the Philippines. The northern part of the island, where we were happily ensconced, is largely composed of limestone. Like many tropical presentations of limestone and karst, […]

Posted On

05/2/11

Author

Arlo Pelegrin

WP_Post Object
(
    [ID] => 45037
    [post_author] => 39
    [post_date] => 2011-04-29 00:00:00
    [post_date_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00
    [post_content] => 

Arriving back in Sawai after our last jungle trek, I was tired, hungry, and dirty. It is times like that when I have really missed the comfort of my shower, clean comfy clothes to change into, my Mom to comfort me, and a big bed. The comforts and conveniences of home, of having my Mom to make me my favorite food or just listen to me complain. Really, to just be taken care of.

Minutes later, we hear loud noises coming from the front of the hotel, a group of people arriving.Thinking nothing of it, I continued unpacking and searching for some semi clean clothes to put on. Unexpectedly, my Ibu from our Masi Hulan home stay is standing shyly at the door of my room, waiting for me to notice her. After our warm embraces and me trying to string together a sentence that would let her know I am so happy to see her (first I told her I was happy to see me, she waited, ever forgiving, for me to figure it out), she pulls out a little basket that she had woven, closed tightly with a shiny gold lock with a small key hanging out of it. Having no idea what was in it, and what could possibly be big enough for my Ibu to walk the two hours to our hotel from Masi Hulan, I quickly opened the box to her satisfaction. Inside lay my small, old cell phone that I had apparently left behind. In that moment, any need to be taken care of was eradicated, lost as quickly as it had set in.

My Ibu had just walked two hours to give me something I had left, I had forgotten, my own fault. She cared enough about me, enough about my happiness and comfort. I am still trying to wrap my head around the warmth that these people have, that they give to us so willingly, holding nothing back. They give and give and expect nothing but broken Bahasa conversations and photos and smiles and laughter in return. It feels so unbalanced, they give so much to us, letting us in their homes and lives and families and I feel as though I have nothing to give back. In that moment, when I opened the box, I felt so entirely cared for and even though I had left Masi Hulan, I was still part of their family enough that my Ibu made sure I was taken care of.

I feel so lucky to have been a part of their lives, even if only for a short time. The smiles and warmth of the people we have met have spread through me so completely, have become so imprinted in me, have done so much for me, that I can only hope remembering them with happiness and warmth and holding on to the many things they taught me is enough in return.

Marjorie

[post_title] => The Gift [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => the-gift [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2011-04-29 00:00:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 1970-01-01 00:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://yakyak.chandigarhsoftware.com/?p=45037 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw [categories] => Array ( [0] => WP_Term Object ( [term_id] => 356 [name] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 [slug] => indonesia-semester-spring-2011 [term_group] => 0 [term_taxonomy_id] => 356 [taxonomy] => category [description] => [parent] => 256 [count] => 96 [filter] => raw [term_order] => 19.1 [cat_ID] => 356 [category_count] => 96 [category_description] => [cat_name] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 [category_nicename] => indonesia-semester-spring-2011 [category_parent] => 256 [link] => https://my.wheretherebedragons.com/category/spring-2011/indonesia-semester-spring-2011/ ) ) [category_links] => Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011 )

Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011

View post

The Gift

Marjorie Isaacs,Indonesia Semester, Spring 2011

Description

Arriving back in Sawai after our last jungle trek, I was tired, hungry, and dirty. It is times like that when I have really missed the comfort of my shower, clean comfy clothes to change into, my Mom to comfort me, and a big bed. The comforts and conveniences of home, of having my Mom […]

Posted On

04/29/11

Author

Marjorie Isaacs

1 2 3 10