The Top 5 Reasons I Want to Learn Bahasa Indonesia

Teaching. Traveling. Writing.

This Saturday, I am going to Jogjakarta to study Bahasa Indonesia for a few days.
Here are some of the reasons why I am spending my fall break in a school, instead of in Thailand on a beach or on a boat off the coast of Borneo.

1) Respect
I see learning the language of the place you live a sign of respect.  It’s like saying, “I know I am in your space, and I want you to see me as someone who can learn from you.”  Perhaps it is because of the dynamic between races in the States, but being a presence in a space that is inhabited largely by people who are less financially blessed seems like an intrusion not only physically, but mentally as well. It seems as if basic competence in Bahasa Indonesia is a small price to pay for the potential of being able to “level” with…

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