THE STRING OF EMERALDS ON THE EQUATOR
Let us turn to the map of Asia. We will find a group of islands. The islands lie to the south of Malaysia and form a link between Asia and Australia. These islands form the Indonesian archipelago.
The island of Borneo or Kalimantan is the largest and Bali is considered to be the most beautiful. Some of the islands are covered in dark, dense forests; for these islands are in the middle of the tropic area. They have tropical climates because they lie on the equator.
Many parts of Indonesia are mountainous. Mount Kerinci is the highest. Many Indonesian volcanoes are still active. It is a land full of paddies and foilage. The mountains, rivers, and rice fields make Indonesia very beautiful.
There are two seasons in Indonesian: the dry season and the rainy season. The dry season lasts from May to October. The wet season is from November to April.
We are proud to be to be Indonesian citizens. Our national anthem “Indonesia Raya” , which was composed by Wage Rudolf Supratman, describes the glory of Indonesia. The beauty of Indonesia is very famous throughout the world and is one of the reasons why Indonesia is referred to as “The String of Emeralds on the Equator”.
The oceans of South-East Asia contain many different kinds of fish. First of all there are the beautiful tropical fish which people keep in aquariums.
Others are edible fish which are an important source of food. Fish contains protein which is very important for our bodies. Another animal which is found in the ocean is the turtle. Some people like to catch turtles to eat. Turtle soup is a popular dish in many restaurants. The meat of a turtle is delicious.
Turtle usually lay their eggs in the sand on a quiet beach. They come ashore at night and often lay over a hundred eggs. Then they cover the eggs with sand and return to the ocean.
We can find turtles along the Indian Ocean. On the island of Java we can find a lot of turtles at Pelabuhan Ratu Beach. What can we produce from a turtle? Besides their eggs and meat, we can make various kinds of accessories such as small hand-bags and brooches.
Unfortunately, the number of turtles is decreasing because many fishermen have taken the turtles from Indonesian waters. As a result our government has issued some regulations to protect them. Now we all know that hunting turtles carelessly is against the law. As a good citizen, we should always obey these regulations.
DO YOU LIKE INDONESIAN DANCING?
Indonesian dancing is famous throughout the world. Although there are many different types of dances in Indonesia, there are many things which they all have in common.
First of all, the dancers usually move toward the ground and not away from it. In many Indonesian dancers, the dancers sit or kneel on the ground. They never move towards or jump into the air, as is common in dances from other countries.
Secondly, the dancers move slowly with short, careful steps. There is no little running, hopping or skipping, except in some of the male battle dances from South Nias.
Thirdly, the dancers do not turn around in a full circle when they dance, as we commonly find in some traditional dances from India.
Fourthly, the hands are very important. The position and movement of the hands and fingers are always very smooth and graceful.
Fifthly, there are several movements in many Indonesian dances which imitate animal movements, such as the movements of bird, deer, and even monkeys.
Sixthly, the speed or tempo of Indonesian dances is usually slow. In Bali, however, there are dances which have very quick movements, such as the “Legong”.
Lastly, the dancers do not move through a large space or area as they dance. Often the dancers stay in the same place, or make small movements around a small area.
These are only some of the features which are unique to traditional Indonesian dance.
There are several names typical dances from various regions in Indonesia, among others:
1). This dance is from West Sumatra. The dancers hold two candles in their hands.
2). It’s from East Kalimantan. Sometimes the dances on round metal which makes a special sound
3). It’s from South Sulawesi. A female dancer holds a fan in her hand
4). It’s from Jakarta. The dancer’s costume is very colorful, and she also puts on a large beautiful hat
5). It’s welcoming dance from Bali. The dancers have a lot of flowers around their head
6). It’s from North Sumatra. It’s a social dance. The dancer puts on an “ulos”
7). It’s from Maluku. The dancer holds a scarf in her hand
8). It’s from West Java. The dancer sometimes puts on a mask
9). It’s from Aceh. the dancers are usually male. Their movements are very quick. It shows a heroic spirit
10). It’s form Yogyakarta. Four female dancers dance gracefully telling us about ancient stories
And many more traditional dances from various regions in Indonesia.
If you visit Indonesia, do not forget to stop by and enjoy the beautiful shades in some areas. Thank you very much.