Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Karate kid and concrete houses


This is Main Street in Katiet. No room for cars -- that's my kind of main street, especially after three months in Jakarta! One of the local kids is striking a karate pose for the camera.

There were two major types of houses in town: wooden ones with thatch roofs, and concrete ones with corrugated metal roofs. Apparently people want the concrete houses because they're "modern" and look like wealthy people's houses, even though the wooden ones are more appropriate to the insanely hot climate (and much nicer to look at, in my opinion).

That same preference is part of what caused the high death toll in the Yogya quake. Houses made of stuff like wood and bamboo are more earthquake-resistant, and they're less catastrophic if they do come down on your head, but people don't want to live in the kind of houses their grandfathers lived in. The concrete's always whiter on the other side of the fence, I suppose.

7 comments:

michele said...

aside from the added danger of the concrete homes, what about the noise factor of tin roofs vs thatch? imho, there's nothing louder than a rainstorm on a tin roof. except maybe when coconuts and other hard matter fall on it.

kopisusu2 said...

Hmm, excellent point! Guess I'll have to go back there for a few weeks and stay in different kinds of houses to sort this out. A rainstorm on a tin roof might be kinda nice right now ... nicer than the BLABBBVVVVBBBBTTTTTTT of de-mufflered motorbikes roaring down Danau Tondano Street, anyway.

michele said...

Ahhhhhh..... so THAT'S what de-mufflered motorbikes sound like in jakarta. i'd been lying awake at night, wondering, trying to come up with the right sequence of letters...

Anonymous said...

i'm glad of three things here. 1) glad that you two exist, B) that you two are great friends, and thirdly, that I once again have a chance to listen to your wacky-ass conversations. makes the heart grow lighter.
jdh

michele said...

it takes a wacky-ass conversationalist to know two wacky-ass conversationalists.

jdh, it's great to hear from you again! get my email from kopisusu if you want and drop me a line.

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