Sunday, April 22, 2012

Its 2012... yet...

Its 2012.. yet...
Was told by my wife that her grandfather (we call him Akik) had a stroke..and the next day, I drove to the village with her parents and then picked up her auntie and husband.. and went to see Akik.
Had a long talk.. well, they did, I just kept of saying that it was not as bad as initially reported but that Akik should go to hospital and see what to do next. Also should need to do physiotherapy.
The family decided to seek traditional treatment and to get 'urut' (massage), as 'angin masuk badan' (air entered body - direct translation, and if a bubble of air entered your bloodstream.... you wouldn't be here). I was rather frustrated with this, but couldn't say anything about it.
Its 2012.. and yet we have people in villages who still believe in charms, spirits etc.But who am I to say anything on this. The Malays still believe in 'bomohs,' and various other beliefs, the Chinese in their 'sinseh,' and various beliefs.. so I guess the Iban is not much different.
I don't blame them either.. there is no medical service there.. in fact once we left town, there was nothing. I even remember a story by relatives as to how they pull out each others tooth using pliers, in 2011. The nearest hospital (2 hours away by car - most of them don't have cars). I blame the politicians for not caring for the people enough to provide the basics but they will also have their excuses (you should drive to Simunjan and Batu Kepit and 'feel' the road, see how people live without running water and electricity, who still hunt for food, and live off the money they can get for rubber, pepper, or others). In the meantime the people in the villages suffer and continue in their old ways.
On the way back, my father in law speaks of how Iban and those in his village will never prosper as they fight and bicker among themselves, jealousies are rife, and the young have nearly all left for the town, leaving the old and the very young to tend to what is left. Sad.
Its 2012.. yet...
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