Category Archives: indonesia

MACAM KUMBANG by Peter Nolan Smith

In 1990 I got off the train from Surabaya a little past dawn and headed over to the port of Jakarta. An inter-island ship was departing to Sumatra at noon and I looked forward to a cruise through the Java Sea to the Indian Ocean. As I neared the dock, a man of indeterminable race […]

FROM BIAK TO MEDAN on Kindle Amazon

FROM BIAK TO MEDAN covers my travels from Indonesia’s Irian Jaya to Sumatra in 1991. A time was before cellphones and ATM. My modes of transport were liners, jets, prop planes, horses, motorbikes, trains and buses. I was a ‘mistah’, but soon learned enough Bahasa Indonesian to know that ‘angin’ was dog and ‘babi bear’ […]

Monster Wipe-Out

In 1996 Richie Boy flew out to Bali. I met him at the airport. His baggage consisted of a knapsack and three surfboards. “Why so many boards?” “Because one of them is for you.” Richie Boy had come halfway around the world to surf Kuta, Ulu Watu, and G-Land. “Me.” My surfing skills were taxed […]

THE TASTE OF PIG by Peter Nolan Smith

My great-grandaunt Bert circumnavigated the world on her father’s whaling ship in the 1870s. In 1960 National Geographic published a story about her childhood travels and at her 101st birthday the old Yankee lady related tales of the black-toothed betel-nut chewers of Indonesia and tiger hunter in Java. The only two other family member to […]

ERIN GO BALI by Peter Nolan Smith

My first trip to Bali was in 1990. Kuta Beach was most tourist’s destination for sea, sun, and fun. Being a pseudo-intellectual I opted for Ubud, an idyllic village of Legong dancers, ornate temples, and quiet evenings, where I rented a small house overlooking an idyllic stream. My house servant made me breakfast in the […]