Jakarta’s Street Families

Last night my husband and I stopped at a convenience store to get something (well, beers admittedly) before going home. It was about 10pm. I waited by the motorbike while my husband went inside as a little girl trudged into the parking lot to search through a rubbish bin for recycled goods for her Mum to sell.
I’ve been here  in Jakarta for a year and half now but I still haven’t hardened to such sights.
Her mother was on the road with the wooden rubbish collection cart which she pushed manually and was really tired. Another child was asleep inside the cart and she was comforting him trying to help him to go to sleep amid the noise of the motorbikes fighting for space along the street.
I didn’t have much money on me but I gave her a little bit. She didn’t ask or gesture for it however. It was really heartbreaking. It always is) but against the backdrop of all these bullshit election campaigns here in Jakarta on the eve of the country’s 2014 elections, it just really got me down.
There’s so much ridiculous wealth here and it looks like the only winners in this year’s election will be the preman millionaires and residual powerbrokers of the Suharto era.
And you thought Australian Politics was depressing

 

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