Makan angin literally means “eat wind” and the meaning is the same as “chasing the breeze.” No matter where I am in the world, there are few feelings more liberating than taking to the road on my own set of wheels if only for the sake of being on the move.
In Indonesia, my wheels are a Honda Beat scooter. Her name is Sally and she is one of many wonderful things that have happened to me here. She is my partner-in-crime for makan angin, among many other things. I love it.
I write this after I have just returned from a particularly long session of makan angin. My eyes are glassy from dust in the road and my feet are still tingling from the vibration of the motor. I originally set out this evening to print some important documents that need to be signed and sent early this week, but my usual photocopy place was closed. So instead of turning around, I just kept going. And going. And going.
Houses, warungs, mosques every mile or so… There wasn’t much to see in the dark. But the freedom just to go and to see what’s out there, beyond my school and beyond the familiar roads; there is no greater thrill. It is a simple joy to ride through the night air, the breeze billowing into my jacket and seeing life go on as I pass by.
As only two months remain of my time in Pangkal Pinang, I am trying to be more conscious of the simple joys that make life so wonderful here. Makan angin is certainly one.