Tag Archives: Indonesia

Portraits of a Balinese Cremation Ceremony

I recently spent a week in Bali, Indonesia, for a quick get-a-way. Travelling with a companion, photography was not the focus of this trip (sorry, bad pun). But the camera came with me most places, of course, and a few good images came home with me.

One of the joys of travelling for me is the surprises that often arise, unexpected events and unplanned cultural experiences, that make a visit to a place more than just a beach holiday. In this case it was stumbling upon a cremation ceremony for a member of a Balinese royal family. Unlike most of Indonesia, which is primarily Muslim, Balinese are predominantly Hindu and the custom is to cremate bodies after passing on to the other side. Still a caste society, the process and ceremony involved with cremation varies according the the caste level you are in. A lowly worker? You can look forward to your body being dumped into the ground and then five years later being dug up again to be burned in a mass cremation with all the other deceased workers.

If you are a member of a royal family, you get a much better send-off, such as the one for an Ubud royal family member who had passed away back in February. The body had been stored for two months until the ceremony could be organized and take place in May. A number of processional floats were constructed by volunteer community members, the primary one being an elaborately decorated bamboo tower close to three storeys tall on which the body was loaded and then carried to the burning grounds. After cremation, the ashes were to be given to the family to be spread in the sea. The procession and burning were public events; however, the water gods were apparently not happy with the fire gods this day and during the procession it began raining…hard, as it is often wont to do in the tropics. These are some portraits of participants and observers I was able to get before the skies opened up.

Don’t miss out! Be sure and sign up to have these posts delivered to you via email or RSS. You can also join me on Google+ and Facebook.

Posted in Black and White, Cultural, Indonesia, Photography, Portrait, Travel Also tagged , , |

I Like Rice

Westerners have become rather detached from where our food comes from. When I was growing up, ‘rice’ was called Minute Rice®. It came in a red box and was ready to eat in, well, about a minute. We ate it as a side dish, usually plain with just butter and salt. I still like to eat it that way sometimes, which my Asian friends think is just weird.

In some places rice may be just another culinary ingredient. However, in other places it’s the most important item on the menu and possibly one of the few things some people will eat each day. And in much of the world, it’s still grown and harvested in ways that haven’t changed much in hundreds of years.

Wild Rice

Wild Rice

Lovina Rice Fields

Evening in Bali, Indonesia

Rice Fields of Bohol

Storm clouds building on the island of Bohol, Philippines

Rice Harvesting

Harvesting rice the traditional way in Bali, Indonesia

Rice For Sale

Rice at the market in Cagayan de Oro, Philippines

In the Philippines (and many other places) a meal isn't a meal without rice!

Don’t forget you can sign up to have these posts delivered to you via email or RSS. You can also join me on Google+.

Posted in Cultural, Food, Photography Also tagged , , , |

Balinese Cock Fight – Final

This is a the final post in the Balinese Cock Fighting series.

Watching the Match

Making a Bet

This is the end result of a match. The loser gets to keep his chicken but he typically cuts off a portion and gives it to the winner.

The End

Posted in Cultural, Indonesia, Photography, Places Also tagged , , , , , |

Balinese Cock Fight – 3

This is a continuation of the Balinese Cock Fighting series.

Removing the Spur Blade

Cock Fight

Betting

Posted in Cultural, Indonesia, Photography, Places Also tagged , , , , |

Balinese Cock Fight – 2

This is a continuation of the Balinese Cock Fighting series I began yesterday.

Cock Fight

Cock Fight

Tying on Spur Blade

Related Posts with Thumbnails
Posted in Cultural, Indonesia, Photography, Places Also tagged , , , , |