Thursday, May 13, 2010

A different kind of party

We had a great opportunity to get deeper into the local culture the other evening. We went to celebrate a khitanan - a circumcision. This is one ritual/event that marks the transition from boyhood to manhood. The party was for our first house helper's son, age eleven or twelve.

When we arrived, this was the 'alley' outside of the host homes. Several members of the same family - sibblings in their 30s and 40s live here together. So the party occupied the whole nook where about six families live.
There was a lot of food, and the hosts made sure that we were offered some of everything. No dog this time (as far as we know; this group of people would not consider dog to be food anyway). Mostly chicken and rice - some of which was quite spicy. One of the host homes had the buffet line in their family room (see picture).

This was basically a big party. The music was very loud, but there was no alcohol. There were lots of folks gathered, eating and talking. We gave a small monetary gift to the host. We found it a bit ironic that the young man being honored was not very central to the activities and socializing at the party. We weren't even sure which one he was since we'd only met him once or twice several months ago.
Here's Beth with our former pembantu (helper). We are glad we were able to keep a good relationship with her in spite of not having her work for us any longer. This was in another family member's home - their family room.

Our friends' former pembantu (helper) with her grandchild.


  1. Wow, how interesting...I had just heard of this recently thru friends in, I bet the young man was in bed...thanks for sharing! And you look great Beth!

  2. We heard from another friend who went to this party a little before we did that the young man being honored was sitting in a corner wearing festive clothing. I am pretty sure I saw him, based on their description of what he was wearing, and had wondered if he might be the fella behind the festivities.