Batu City- Riding on Nizam’s motorcycle, I just came back from 1-day trip to Batu city. Unlike how Batu always feels like it’s more than an hour away in my head, we arrived at the school pretty shortly. SDK Sang Timur Kota Batu was a private Catholic school, although it seemed exactly the same with any other public school except the crosses on the wall.
When Nizam explained why we are here and what we’d like to do (I guess?) to the principal nun and several other teachers, they looked a little confused. To be honest I was relieved to see that I am not the only one who’s finding it extremely hard to communicate with Nizam. Or they simply couldn’t think of a kind of job they should give to this random foreigner in such short notice. Whatever the reason was, the teachers made a good impression by not freaking out to see a foreigner and trying to take my pictures without asking.
After the short meeting I went out to do my “environmental observation” just like I did yesterday. But instead of showing me around the school, the teacher took me to a classroom and made me introduce myself to kids. Clearly there has been a misunderstanding. Why am I not surprised? Anyhow I told them that I’ve always been interested in environmental issues, so I came here to find what kind of problems that Indonesia have, and how the people here are dealing with them. Kids greeted me warmly as always. And I am touched by their kindness every single time.
To get to the point, SDK Sang Timur Kota Batu was not the cleanest school I’ve visited. Although there were beautiful trees everywhere, so were trashes. It was as if students were not informed that they should not throw garbage on the ground. I also didn’t like the fact that cement is covering the ground, making some trees half buried under it.