Not food related.
Looking through and backing up some old pics, found this one of lil t and from this summer. We took a tiny ass speedboat five hours up river to visit a Dayak village in Borneo for a couple days. It was an incredible experience meeting and talking with the people, sleeping in their family longhouse, walking the village with the tribal leader, and hanging with the kids.
In this pic, the village put on a welcome ceremony for us the first night we were there. Lots of homebrewed rice wine was passed around (I don’t think my lil aqua colored cup ever went empty) and we danced and drank with the elders. I got to jam on the drums with the band, which was awesome, and ended up staying up all night with the tribal leader drinking his private stash of homebrewed rice wine and talking about leadership (with my guide/interpreter helping out and getting drunk with us). The tribal leader was intrigued with my tattoos, and said many of the modern Dayak don’t carry that tradition anymore.
It was sad discussing some of the economic and social conditions of the area with him. Big palm oil factories buying up land that has been in families for hundreds of years at dirt cheap prices, promising the family jobs and wages, and turning a cheap profit until the land is dried up and useless, which doesn’t take more than a couple growing cycles. The families are left with nothing for income and land they can’t afford to buy back, which is useless anyway at that point. Education is not state supported (and is beyond a majority of the people’s means) beyond 2nd grade, so education/better jobs is not an option. It was a very eye opening downward spiral that many of the people are, in a way, forced into, but good to know that villages like Danson’s (the tribal leader) are holding strong to their land for now, and sustaining themselves off it.
This wasn’t meant to be a downer, but I thought it was good to share what we learned over there. It’s sometimes hard for me to get out and talk to people, being an extreme left introvert (INTJ anyone?), but we found that a smile and an open hand usually broke down barriers and started some good conversation (the brew helps too).