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Jakarta Post

No ‘pinang tree’, bamboo will do for ‘panjat pinang’

  • The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Wed, August 14 2019   /  12:24 am

According to the old Indonesian adage, tak ada rotan, akar pun jadi (falling crumb, one must be content with crust). So, as there is no pinang (areca palm trunks), bamboo will do.The high price and supply shortage of pinang are the main reasons why many Jakartans are no longer using them to play panjat pinang (a traditional game of climbing lubricated trunks on top of which various prizes to be taken by climbers are hung).Panjat pinang is conventionally a competition in celebrating Independence Day in Indonesia despite the historical background of such play. The climbing contest is believed to have originated from the Dutch colonial era, held by the Dutch in celebratory events with participants comprising mostly local people.This year, Indonesia will commemorate its 74th year of independence, which falls on Saturday. Although Jakartans are now using bamboo, they still habitually refer to...