The backside of the Kanoman market was spacious, and there were food stalls popping up all over the place. It was a little like a food stall village. But there were no customers. It was past noon, but there were no customers at any of the stalls. There was a languid air about the stalls. The same was true of the stalls I approached. The owner of the stall and a strolling guitarist were relaxing together in the stall with no customers.
The owner of the stall, a woman, was sitting cross-legged on a chair, talking to the strolling guitarist sitting across from her. The image of a strolling guitar player is that of a man who plays at night in a bar, responding to orders from customers. Here, however, strolling guitar players seem to be hanging out among the stalls in the middle of the day. I wondered if there were any customers who would be interested in having a guitar player play while they ate lunch.
Indonesia is a country where the majority of people believe in Islam, which prohibits drinking. Even if the sun goes down, there is no guarantee that alcohol will be served in the stall. This is complicated because it does not mean that you can never drink alcohol. It is not like Iran, where having, drinking, and making alcohol are prohibited by law, so alcohol is sold in the streets, and not all the people are Muslims (many overseas Chinese live in Indonesia). In Turkey, where Muslims also make up the majority of the population, it depends on where you are, but in Istanbul, drinking is tolerated and you can drink in the city. But here in Indonesia, drinking is generally considered to be a bad thing, and the places that serve alcohol are limited. I guess the reason why people don't drink under these circumstances is because of their religious beliefs.
January 25, 2021
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