My first fieldwork experience has so far been full of opportunities for trying things I have not tried before. I have honestly felt very at home here from the beginning, as funny as that may sound! The only thing that caused me a little bit of a headache were the motorbikes!
I have come to Indonesia fully aware that, in order to reach our little village up in the mountain, I will need to get on one. I had never been on a motorbike before and was completely dreading it! Motorbikes are a very common way of travelling here and everyone rides them, even the elementary school kids in our village! My first ride was on an “ojek”, a motorbike taxi. What began as a terrifying experience ended up being kind of fun! A good way to get rid of a fear is to completely immerse yourself in what scares you – an uphill ride over the in some places quite severely damaged road was just that! The things we do for the primates we love! 🙂
I have since rode on a motorbike many times and now consider myself fear-free! Many of the local people have been riding motorbikes practically their entire lives, and I find it easy to trust them! Motorbikes are such an integral part of life that there’s almost no terrain that’s too difficult for them. To illustrate this point, here’s a photo I took at Papandayan, an active volcano the LFP team visited for St Valentine’s day!
- Elena Racevska