Indonesia - Too Tall


In Jakarta, there is an amazing cultural theme park that has buildings and exhibits that represent each part of Indonesia.  There are grand palaces, art exhibits, live animals and amusement rides.   It's free and a "must-do" if you want to quickly learn about the country.    

We were there shooting some video for the TV show "Peruanos en el Mundo,"  Four young guys approached me and showed me their phones, indicating they wanted me to take a photo of them.  Of course, that is what I thought.   They didn't speak English but I finally figured out they wanted to take a photo WITH me.   I thought that was a little strange but said "sure."   They each took a photo, four total and left.    There was another person nearby who had seen the entire thing and asked me in English: "Do you know why they took a photo with you?"  I said, I had no idea.  He laughed and said it is because they had never seen anyone as tall as you before.   They wanted to each take a photo so they could show their family and friends the "giant" they saw today.  

I laughed and thought it was funny.   (Something similar happened to me in China.)  The average Indonesian is 5'2" tall.   I am more than a foot taller than that.  

We were in the park with a Peruvian businessman named Jose Morales.   Jose explained to us that the next day was "Batik Day"   On that day, everyone wears batik to celebrate the traditional Indonesian cloth that is painted using wax.  

Jose took us to a mall so we would have a batik shirt to wear.   I found a shirt, I really liked.  Jose, who speaks Indonesian, asked the clerk if they had it in my size.  He pointed at me and said "too tall."   We kept looking and found another store.   The very helpful clerk found several nice shirts but didn't have anything big enough for me.    He finally pulled out the shirt you see in the photo below.  

Steve Hunsicker in his batik shirt on Jakarta Bay

It was a tight fit and a little short but it was the best I was going to do.  Jose insisted on paying for the shirts as a gift to us.   I don't often bring home souvenirs from my travels, but this one is a keeper.  I've worn it several times since I returned from my trip.   As it turns out, I am not "too tall" for batik after all.


Our story with Jose is the first story in the show, which I have linked below.  I've also linked the show we shot in Bali.  

This post is part of my series "One Photo - One Country."  I'm am selecting one photo and writing one story from every country I have visited.   Your comments and questions are welcome.  

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