November 2009 supplementary
on Just Some Things I Rote (Indonesia), 15/Mar/2010 19:51, 34 days ago
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Supplimentary- Oops I forgot an interesting tale from November!I just realised, that I made a mistake when I said nothing interesting happened in November, there was one thing but it shows you what a slow month it was that the one thing there was, I actually forgot.I was in my penthouse indulging in an activity which takes up approximately 80% of my free time, washing my clothes when suddenly I hear a very loud‘thud, thud, thud’ noise. Now normally, living right by the seas front, this is just a particularly decrepit fishing boat with diesel engine circa 1915 making it’s away across the bay, until I realised it was a small helicopter.‘The penthouse’ where I stay is the tallest building in all of Ba’a by some way so as I looking out I saw the helicopter come right over the town and then hover over the town. Now Rote doesn’t exactly have a great deal of air traffic and although in England you get the occasional police helicopter flying over your house (how close depends on the level of criminal activity you indulge in) however in eighteen months on the island, that is the first and only time I have seen a helicopter here.Suddenly from its hovering position, and I am really not exaggerating when I say this, it started heading straight for the penthouse. I was, I will admit desperately thinking whether something had happened that I hadn’t heard about and the embassy was evacuating me or more worryingly, if it was packed with commandos who would abseil onto my balcony and mercilessly shoot me (I have a paranoid , self obsessed and overactive imagination). In the end, it actually swooped over my house close enough that had I beenso inclined, I could have thrown a stone at it as it passed by before landing on the football pitch next to my house.Unfortunately, my relief at not being assassinated, evacuated or victim of a suicide attack by an insane helicopter pilot was short lived as the football pitch is incredibly dusty (we were waiting for rain to actually re-grow some sort of grass on it) and the spinning helicopter blades whipped up a sand cloud which quickly engulfed my washing.This felt especially unfair as I’d already panicked as it passed so close it had already almost blown half my washing off the drying stand. Thankfully I had pegged it down due to some advice given to me many years ago by a family member who’d said ‘John, always remember; if you’re living on a small tropical island and a group of commandos comes to assassinate you in a helicopter, always make sure your washing is pegged down otherwise it’ll be blown away by the force of the rotor blades’, which turned out to be sound advice....Anyway, having cursed at my now dust covered washing, I went down to the football pitch to find out some answers (the question was more‘why is there a helicopter here?’ rather than ‘why did you cover my washing in dust’) as to did half the town.It turned out there had been some sort of scuffle between a military bloke and a police man and some big wig had to come to mediate. I personally thought that spending a great deal of money flying by helicopter seemed a little excessive when he could have waited 16 hours and come by ferry. Or if he didn’t want to wait until then at least just jump on a military boat and come that way, it would most likely have been as quick and considerably cheaper to the tax payer.It was also a little strange that they flew and landed right in the centre of town (30-45 minutes drive to the police and military headquarters or the governor’s office in one of which the meeting took place) having gone across the entire town not to mention that they had flown past the ‘airport’ ( a mere 5 minutes drive from said locations) and indeed any of the countless huge fields and open spaces right next to those possible meeting locations. Strange really, I mean it’s almost as if the individual wanted lots of people to see how important he was arriving in his expensive helicopter, although I would never make such an accusation....I should say, I have just deleted about a page of self righteous ranting from this entry because I decided that there are things that may be better unsaid in the public domain.