On a flight to Jakarta there was this boy who sat by me,
he said hi, introduced himself and asked me from where did I came from.
Now it was a KLM flight, it came from Holland and made a Transit in KL before landing in Jakarta. So the kid was somewhat curious to have a conversation with someone from a foreign land or something.
I said I was from Kuala Lumpur.
He was somewhat surprised, the pleasant sort of surprise.
"Oh really? I'm from Kuching!"
"Ahh that's nice, I was born in Kuching."
After a brief history on why I was born in Kuching kid continued asking..
"You go there for work mister?"
"No, I'm going for a short holiday"
"Wow really, me too, me and my family are going to visit my father's friend, he is a chinese guy who lives in Jakarta."
"You know, even though he is Chinese, he cannot use his name, because Indonesia don't like Chinese people, the last leader, Suharto dont like chinese so they say cannot all must throw the name. They a bit racist like that. Unlike Malaysia they don't want people from China to come and want the chinese to go back to China. So that's why ah they all don't speak chinese and there are very few Chinese people in Jakarta, my father's friend is one of the few of them there..."
"How old are you kid?"
"I am fourteen, why do you ask?"
"Nothing I was just wondering...."
I just couldn't bear to point out the irony that in a Dutch Airline, bound for Indonesia, we are two Malaysians conversing in English.
On the flight back to Kuala Lumpur, I was surrounded by a family of Indonesian Chinese, going for a holiday to KL I think, siblings with babies and such, pretty noisy bunch, by which during entire flight, they all spoke Indonesian...
I wanted to tell the kid that,
actually there are many Chinese in Jakarta, it's just that, Unlike in Kuching... In Jakarta you got to look really closely to tell the difference.
But he's just fourteen.... I'll let him discover porn first...