I don't see myself as photogenic. I don't really see me as cute, pretty or beautiful in pictures even if I try. Sometimes I get good pics, most of the time not as hoped, ah well... So most of the time I make faces, because there is no point of making the same faces in each picture anyways... you don't see the ambiance of the moment.
But I do like the girl I see everyday in the mirror. Not so in the morning, because for some reason my eyes can't seem to have that morning freshness. I definitely am a nocturnal being. Coming back to what I was saying... no matter how ugly I make faces in the mirror, I like what I see. Thank God, I can accept it and I'm very happy with what I got. Yeah there are the occasional zits, sun burns, and bad hair days, but overall that don't bother me THAT much.
Now working in the east part of Indonesia shows me much about what beauty is about. You really see different characters of faces, and what people try to look like. The east Indonesia is dominated by Melanesian African looks. And for these people, they were born like this, and they can't help them selves. So very different especially with the west of Indonesia being more melanesian oriental look. Sometimes honestly, I see them as ugly, and pity comes in. And at these moments I ask my self why do I think they're ugly and why do I pity them? It's not like they have a choice to be born as such. What would I want them to look like? Pleasant looking? What's that? .... desperate need of a reality check here!!!
From top to bottom: Benzelina and her mom, a little local girl, Maskur, wife of Paa, Charles, Amas and Carlos. Amas and Maskur are siblings. Aren't they so good looking? ;P
Lately, after seeing so many eastern friends, due to the festive nature of our upcoming Independence day, I realize that I can't see them as ugly; and I musn't. Looking closer, I could see how good looking these people are. The girls are exotic and the guys are handsomely raw. Just different. I can see that with the characteristics they have, they can be beautiful as hell in their own way.
I remember when I was in Sydney. Looking at so much Caucasians made me realize, there is no way Indonesian beauty or what ever that maybe, can be compared to Caucasian beauty. They are just made to be delicate! Light skin, blue/green eyes, with features that you just can't beat. And most of them are just good looking even though if they are considerate as moderate. I've come to realize that I too was consumed by western beauty as a standard. And that pageants are just absurd when it comes to comparing beauty standard... hence Miss Indonesia that can not speak Indonesia nor does she know much about Indonesia *sigh*.
This is where globalization becomes very scary. People just wanna be beautiful with different understanding, I dare not say miss for who am I to judge what is missed and what is not. There are countless locals with bonded hair, facial power 3 tones lighter than their skin tone, which is a no no, and fashion worn that does not flatter their body shapes. But it's their choice, I respect that. I just hoped there will be more awareness towards this. I guess the Caucasian beauty rules the urban world at the moment, but hopefully there will come a time where all beauty is appreciated as the Benetton add. We are just different! To this I salute Benetton.
I also realize another point of what traveling is all about. It's seeing more things, understand how mailable the world is. I don't know if we should have more tolerance or not?! But we should have more respect for different conditions and different decisions that people make. Without traveling and seeing these difference, we become more narrow minded. And I advice anyone to just take a step to a direction that you have never have before.
But of course, some have their own 'personal standards' which they tend to keep hehehe... HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY!
PS: on this note I would like to salute to Gelar, my friend here hired to teach English and reading. He has seen more since he is amongst the locals. He speaks their language and understands a their jokes. And he definitely understands the people more no matter what his personal opinion is towards them.