They are really doing it tough. It doesn’t get tougher. Their rural counterparts have an easier life. Free of the urban stress and the higher costs of living. Their country cousins accept their lot. This group doesn’t. The daily struggle is in the hope of getting a leg up in life. In the village, there is very little hope to move up.
Walk with Me
I still don’t know who does it harder every day. My brother Herman wakes up when it's still dark and then goes to work for that horrible man who owns the farm half an hour away from where we live. I jump on Bambang’s motorbike and we do the daily hike to Surabaya. He has a good job in an office and I’m so grateful he doesn’t ask me for petrol money. My boss is terrible too. He has a kaki lima with a permanent awning just behind the Intiland Tower Office Building. He does the cooking, I serve and wash the plastic plates. This is not why I come to the city but this is the best for now. By the time I get home my wife’s asleep, so is my sister in law. She leaves dinner for me, often its just Indomie.
But I’m glad that I’m bringing home some money every week. Even though it's not much and I know it. What’s the choice, condemn myself to life as a farm laborer in the village or look for a better opportunity in Surabaya. I choose the latter. I will keep on trying. I know I’m not young, not getting younger. But there’s got to be more to life than the one Hadi has chosen to live. Maybe Bambang can get me a job in his office too. I know he’s looking out for me, we’ve been friends since we were little kids.
This Sunday I’m going to play soccer with the boys. It’s the only day I have that I can call my own.
When I get to watch the news sometimes I see pictures of life in rural India and I thank God I’m better of than they are. For that, I’m grateful.