9 comments on “Buggery in Brunei

  1. Well if the pristine wilderness is expensive enough to keep riff raff like you from experiencing it up close and personal then that doesn’t say much for vagabonds like me. While the sharia law bit is news to me, the Sultan and his vast fortune, rotting car collection and the gold-plated bathrooms of his private airplanes are not.

    I have long been curious to visit this miniscule nation but somehow doubt that the dent it would put in my bank account is worth the limited amount of cultural experience gained from any such endeavor. As such thank you for my first and only (at least for the near foreseeable future) trip to the Nation of Brunei, the Abode of Peace. And yes, that is the country’s official full name.

    In closing, here is an article I read a while back about everyone’s (at least in Brunei) favorite hypocritical billionaire dictator: http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2014/05/06/how-the-sultan-of-brunei-violated-his-sharia-law-with-me.html

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    • Hi Derek. Sorry to take a while getting back to you but have been in Papua where internet is limited but more importantly my blog has been blocked by the powers that be,, got around it now I am in yogya. If they didn’t like me before I wrote about papua they will hate me once they read what I will be saying. I will take it as a compliment that I am demand worthy of blocking as I could access other WordPress sites, even if it is just for a technical reason- any thoughts?. Anyway Brunei, as you have to pass through from Sarawak to Sabah I it made sense to see a bit of it but your analysis is fair, there’s not really a good enough reason to go out of your way of spend a lot of money going there, but of course the people are as friendly as elsewhere in the region. As mere riff raff I gaze in envy at your most warranted vagabond status.

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      • No worries….hmmm that is mighty strange. I encountered web censorship in Vietnam but never in Indonesia. You’ll have to let me know more about the exact error message you saw. Curious as to your take on Papua too. I haven’t been there yet but heard much during my year traveling around Indonesia from locals and Indonesian travel bloggers.

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      • The first day I got there it was OK but after that it just wouldn’t let me sign in or a not available msg came up but I did get one internet-positif msg. Now I am in yogya I can connect via my WordPress app with a vpn but can’t seem to connect to WordPress. Com at all but that could just be a connectivity issue. All access in Papua was very slow anyway, some regimes keep it slow deliberately which effectively censors things like YouTube or stuff with images without actually banning them. Will have a go from an internet cafe later and see what happens

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      • Managed to get onto the site ok at the internet cafe so it must have just been in Papua but thats not a major surprise I suppose given the situation there. If you know any indonesians who have blogged about papua in english (or would be worth using google translate on) I would be interested in having a look. Would have liked to stay longer but couldnt afford to keep paying for air fares to get around. Both Papuans and Indonesians (of course) were equally very friendly and I will have at least got a couple of blog posts worth out of it. Ended up treking in the Baliem valley which was great.

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      • Now it is my turn to apologize for my delayed response, been trying to make the most of my last few days in Mexico. Jogja is amazing, that was my base of operations last year. So much to do and see within a short motorcycle ride. How long are you in town for?

        Yeah, Papua internet is notorious but Indonesian culture is so addicted to social media (particularly Twitter and Path) that they actually have decent internet speeds, at least compared to some of the other southeast Asian nations. Of course this depends highly on where in the country you are. Jakarta, Jogja, Shibuya and Bali I was able to consistently get over 4mbps out of my personal wifi hotspot.

        Yeah, they definitely blog in English. Will compile some links or introduce you on Twitter. In a rush?

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      • I imagine your internet workload far exceeds mine, besides its your living so no need to apologise. Have struggled with erratic wi fi but internet cafes have generally been good. Will be here for a week or so. Never heard so many bad buskers as here, are they deliberately shit so we will pay them to go away? Not that I was tempted but I hope the state of the hookers I saw wasn’t representative of the city, but I have to say the rat population was highly impressive. Sure I won’t have trouble finding things to see and do. I know you are busy so if you do find some time to send some links it would be gratefully appreciated but no rush, I just wanted to get a flavour of how the papua situation is viewed by Indonesians who are more informed about what’s going on. Just had a pair of good buskers so not all bad thankfully. All the best g

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      • Just replied to you and it disappeared??? I imagine your internet workload is immense and besides it’s your living so no need to apologise, not everyone on the internet has your dedication to responding to people. Will be here for about a week so will have time to see some stuff. Beginning to suspect that most of the buskers are deliberately shit so we will pay to get rid of them. I hope the saggy prostitutes I saw were not representative of the city but I have to say i was impressed by the rat population. I know you are busy but if you get the chance to send some links it would be gratefully appreciated, I just wanted to get a feel of how the situation in Papua is perceived by the more aware Indonesians. Many thanks g

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