It wasn’t all that long ago, it seems, that we are mourning the loss of so many affected by the earthquakes in Lombok. Then, as if to defy the saying that lightning never strikes twice, Palu city and Donggala Regency in Central Sulawesi were hit by a powerful tremor, as well as subsequent aftershocks, that razed infrastructure to the ground and which resulted in a tsunami that literally swept whole towns off their feet and to needless deaths, leaving survivors with little food, fresh water, medical aid, and other necessities.
We may never know the full extent of the tragedy, such is the remoteness of some of the areas hit, but we can safely say that thousands lost their lives and many countless more lost their livelihoods. For those who have been moved by the plight of so many, we have uploaded a special web resource on www.IndonesiaTatler.com that gathers together in one place information about the many ways that one can give. After all, it may be some weeks since disaster struck, but rebuilding shattered lives takes years.
I won’t diminish the scale of the tragedy by being too glib this month. Instead, I’ll reflect on some of the weightier subjects tackled in this month’s Tatler. We can start with Pernik Nusantara, or Pesona Ragam Etnik Nusantara to give it its full name, which sees prominent society ladies led by Coreta Louise Kapoyos join hands with local craftspeople to present Indonesia’s rich heritage to the world. Read more in “Arts in the Crafts”.
We can then move deftly to the Food Management Program devised by the remarkable Teguh Sebadja STP. This programme, the elements of which may surprise some of you, was born out of Teguh seeing his mum battle cancer and deciding to do something about it.
Finally, we can end on our cover story: the aptly titled “Birthday Wishes”, for it is, indeed, Indonesia Tatler’s anniversary. To wish ourselves well in light of the earthquakes and tsunami is a privilege we are blessed to have. To extend a helping hand to others in times of trouble is our responsibility as citizens.