Thursday, 22 March 2007

My East Timor is:

The most beautiful smiles in the world. Fantastic tasting, organically grown fruit and veggies. More shades of green (in the wet season) than Ireland and Bali combined. Incredible sunsets viewed from Aria Branca. People in villages who have got nothing but will still share it with you. Miles and miles of untouched beaches. The great sound of rain hitting a corrugated tin roof. Stinking piles of rubbish in the streets. Fresh fish whenever you want it. Everyone is a potential baby-sitter. Old women with betel stained teeth cackling delightedly when you muck up the language. The coolest old dudes in the world who also happen to wear the coolest hats. The best shore diving ANYWHERE. Employees who think I’m a silly fatoldsod and who have never let me down. Small boys and old men who can stay underwater on one breath for nearly as long as I can on one tank. “One dollar mister”. The smell of roasting coffee beans. Dolphins. A buck for a pack of cigarettes. The odd rock through a car window. Insects you could put on a leash. Ants in everything. Natural waterfalls. Monkeys running across the roads outside Dili. Nudibranchs. Buckets of sweat. Five people on one motorbike. And a couple of chickens. Baby pigs and goats EVERYWHERE. Anything can be fixed with a bit of string and a hammer. The bloke who delivers my newspaper every day, even on the bad days. The bloke who dug the ditch outside my house last May. Johnny the Tooth (but that’s another story). Hermit crabs in the bedroom. Honey-eaters singing outside my bedroom window every morning. The world’s slowest taxi drivers. Crap Indonesian cover versions of corny C and W songs. “No have, finish”. “The number you are calling is switch off or out of reach”. Urchins! Neat arrangements of spices drying by the side of the road. Tais. “Tangerinas?” Old man Carrascalao driving very slowly when there’s trouble, and his wonderful beard. Nuns on motorbikes. Many flavours of cop. Yellow trucks full of gravel. Corn on the cob. No real traffic rules. Huge corals. Fish on a stick. Thumping bass and 12 year-olds driving mikrolets. Great thunderstorms. Cockerels crowing. Spitting. Waterspouts in November. Ramor Ambons in my dog. The view of Dili from the ocean at 7 in the morning. Potholes. Twenty year-old men who laugh like ten year-old girls. Unselfconscious nasal excavation. Kids having fun in the rain. The smell of Frangipani in my garden. Gum trees. Falling papaya’s hitting the roof with a sound like thunder. Humpback whales at the end of the year. Frigate birds. Mercenaries, missionaries and misfits. Big boys on small bikes....
Please, feel free to add your own 'East Timor' thoughts to this post.....






4 comments:

joao said...

Beautiful!!!

Mauricio said...

Pleez, next-door Indonesia is all that and so much more...

fat old sod said...

You again eh mauricio. The blog is about East Timor, not Indonesia, or Cambodia, or Brazil or anywhere else. The blog is about East Timor. If you want to read about Indonesia read an Indonesian blog. Otherwise keep your ridiculous comments to yourself. Or start your own blog.

sun said...

how lovely. its turning my anxiety about having to live there for 4 months into sweet anticipation.
(i also find it cool how one can write something like this and someone at the other side of the earth can read it and be affected by it). thanks :)