My Small Town, My Views

MBAH GETHUK

LIFE IS SLOWER in Magelang, and that’s why, you don’t even have to set your alarm clock. Country living allows you to enjoy the sights and sounds of nature. You’ll never get lost here – many people always have time to stop and chat. You don’t need multiple locks on the door because the crime rate is relatively lower.

By SAHRUDIN, MagelangImages

Actually, it can also be found several heavily populated urban areas in Magelang Municipality. Those areas usually located around the municipality center, and some are characterized by substandard housing and squalor. While in Magelang Regency, densely populated settlements begin to appear in several areas adjacent to the municipality.

Both Magelang Municipality and Regency are local government administrative divisions composed of a defined territory and population. The Municipality is led by a Mayor, while the Regency by a Regent. But in general, when someone mentions the name “Magelang”, mostly first thing that come to mind is a small town surrounded by several mounts and hills, located in the southern-central of Java Island.

City’s life style has been slowly, even faster to influence people here. They are accustomed to being pressed for time, and in many other ways, there are hardly differences with city’s life. As soon as a new product appears on TV and the internet, it spreads here the day after. The latest model of BB series, compact or DSLR cameras, motorbikes, and even cars – not too difficult to find. But as the such facts also happen anywhere on this spherical earth, here in this simple, short essay I’d better to write Magelang’s other side.

A few kilometers outside downtown, people in villages of Magelang Regency majorly depend on agriculture and their main source of income is cultivation. Their regular life cycle in terms of earning money is that cultivating two to three crops a year, transporting the cultivated food or other products to the nearby towns, selling the cultivated raw material either through middlemen or direct selling.

Though, they enjoy their work and return to home from form lands evening around 6 pm every day, taking bath, having dinner and sleeping before 10 pm itself. There won’t be much work pressure and targets in their daily work – they grandly celebrate every festival and cultural events. One of popular cultural events in Magelang Regency, which is held every year, the Five Mounts Festival (Festival Lima Gunung) by local humanists and traditional artists. In Tegalrejo subdistrict, there is also an annual event named “Khataman” held by a Muslim Boarding School. Many traditional art performances, even Jakarta’s modern artists, to be invited in this cultural-religious event. Both festivals are commonly held at the beginning to the mid of July.

Back to villages life, however, in some ways, you can’t avoid that lifestyle at city level is quite different compared to villages. Days in cities pass like hours, life cycle is very fast and people are busy in their respective business and work. Most of the city population travels a number of kilometers to reach their work places. If their office timings are 8 hours a day, additionally need to spend two hours in travel to reach their office and home in return.

Everyone will be busy in their work schedules. City people can enjoy only in weekends and holidays. Due to high level technology and availability and scope for rich education standards, city people are often highly educated, posh and advanced in lifestyle. You can see a foreign culture mix in terms of wearing clothes and food habits in most of the city population.

Town level people will have the flavor of both village and city. Their lifestyle is almost nearer to city lifestyle, but not a busy life like cities and not as advanced as city culture. They knew the updated technology, but very less people make use of it. Good thing is that town people can easily understand various accents and way of speaking of both village and city people can mingle with them bit faster comparatively. So, whenever you come and stay in a village of mount slopes in Magelang, please, you should never use Jakarta’s dialogue style “lu-gue” instead of “Kulo” [Javanese term of I]. This is “nggaya” and “sok kota“, Man! *** [magelang.images@yahoo.com]

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