Culture & Tradition

Golden Cucumber and Lantang Hidung


aceh mapPutri Bungsu and the Dragons

Folklore from Aceh

ONCE upon a time, there were two dragons lived in Aceh. The dragons were male and female, they were husband and wife. The dragons really wanted to have a child. They always prayed to God to give them a child.

One day the dragons were resting at the river side. Suddenly they saw a baby beside a basket. The basket was drifting by the current of the water.

“My husband, look! There is a human baby inside the basket. Let’s save the baby!” said the mother dragon.

The father dragon immediately swam fast. He brought the baby to the side.

She was a baby girl. The dragons were very happy. They had a child. Although the baby was a human child, the dragons really loved her. They named her Putri Bungsu.

Days passed by, Putri Bungsu was adult. She was very beautiful. The dragons always took care of her. They also always protected her.

In mean time, putri Bungsu real parents were looking for her.

In the mean time, Putri Bungsu real parents were looking for her. There was an incident and accidentallyPutri Bungsu was drifting in the river.

After years looking for her, Putri Bungsu’s real parents finally found her.

“My child, thank God we finally found you. You are our daughter. We know it from the mark in your hand,” said the mother.

The dragons were angry! they said Putri Bunsu was their daugter.

“No! She is our daughter! We have raised her since she was a baby. We loved her and she loved us,” said the mother dragon.

Putri Bungsu’s real parents and the dragons were arguing. They each claimed to be Putri’s Bungsu’sparents and they asked Putri bungsu to stay with them.

They were arguing and they did not get any solutions. Putri Bungsu’s real parents asked for help. They asked Tuan Tapa to help them. Tuan Tapa was a holy man. He also had supernatural power.

Tuan Tapa then asked the dragons to let Putri Bungsu leave and stay with her real parents. The dragons were angry. They asked Tuan Tapa not to interfere.

Tuan Tapa realized that the dragons could not negotiate. Therefore Tuan Tapa challenged them to fight.

“If you win, you can keep her. However you have to let her go and stay with her real parents if you both lose the fight,” said Tuan Tapa.

“Ha ha ha…No problem! We will win the fight!”

Then Tuan Tapa and the dragons were fighting bravely. Although he was alone and had to fight with two dragons, Tuan Tapa was very brave. he used all his skills to fight them.

And finally he won the fight! The father dragon was dead. The mother dragon was very sad and angry. She knew she could not win the fight. She escaped.

The mother dragon was very angry. She wagged her tail. It broke an island into two small islands. people named the islands as Pulau Dua.

The tail also wagged another big island into many small islands. People named the island as Pulau Banyak.

While the body of the father dragon changed into a big stone.
People named it as Batu Hitam. And the blood dried into a big red stone, people named it as Batu Merah


Bali islandNi Timun Mas dan I Lantang Hidung

Folklore from Bali

NI Timun Mas was a beautiful girl. She lived with her mother in a house near a jungle. Ni Timun Mas always helped her mother. When her mother worked in a rice field, Ni Timun Mas always stayed at home to clean up and cook. she was not allowed to go to the rice field. Her mother was afraid that a giant would kidnap her. Yes, there was a giant lived in the jungle. His name was I Latang Hidung. He loved to eat young people!
Her mother always went home in the afternoon. She always asked Ni Timun Mas not to open the door while she worked. Her mother would sing a song, “Ni Timun Mas, I’m home. Please open the door” Then Ni TimunMas opened the door.
Sadly, it happened. I Lantang Hidung came to see the house. The giant was hungry. He banged the door. NiTimun Mas was so scared. Because the door was not opened, the giant left. He was sure there was somebody in the house. He was hiding behind the trees.
And when her mother went home, the giant knew that the door would be opened when a song was sung. He planned to come back and he would sing the song. Ni Timun Mas told her mother about the giant. She was very happy that the door was not opened. Unfortunately, they did not know that the giant already knew their secret.
On the following afternoon, I Lantang Hidung came. The giant sing the song, “Ni Timun Mas, I’m home. Please open the door.” He imitated Timun Mas mother’s voice.
Of course Timun Mas thought it was her mother who came home. She opened the door and suddenly ILantang Hidung grabbed her. The giant kidnapped her and brought her to his house in the jungle.
When her mother arrived, she was so shocked. The door was opened and her daughter was not home. She ran and cried. While she was looking for her daughter, she met a man. He was beating a cat. She felt sorry. She bought the cat from the man and kept the cat. Then she continued her journey, this time she saw a mouse was beaten by a man. She saved and bought the mouse. Later, she met a man who was beating a dog. Again, she saved and bought the dog. And finally she met a man who was trying to kill a snake. She also saved and bought the snake.
It was already dark. The mother decided to go home. She would look for her daughter later in the morning. At night, she remembered she remembered her daughter. She cried. The animals she saved were looking at her. They were carious. The cat asked her.
“Why are you crying?”
The mother was surprised. The animals could talk like humans. She explained that a giant kidnapped her daughter. The animals were so sorry. They wanted to reply her kindness. They would free Ni Timun Mas from the giant.
The animals went to the jungle. They saw the giant was sleeping and Ni Timun Mas was tied with a rope. They set a plan. The mouse would bit the rope. The cat would observe and told them when the giant woke up. The dog and the snake were ready to attack the giant.
They started to do their plan. The mouse slowly bit the rope. It started to loosen up. Finally she was free. Unfortunately, the giant woke up. The cat immediately told his friends. The mouse asked Ni Timun Mas to follow him. The dog and the snake immediately attacked the giant. The dog bit and the snake squeezed the giant, The giant was loosing so much blood. He finally died.
The animals and Ni Timun Mas arrived home. Her mother was very happy. She did not worry anymorebecause the giant was dead, Since then, Ni Timun Mas, her mother and the animals lived peacefully.

east java mapThe Legend Of Banyuwangi

Folklore from East Java

ONCE upon a time inSindureja Kingdom, KingSidareja was talking to his vice regent, his name wasPatih Sidapaksa. The King asked Patih Sidapaksa to give him the flesh of a young deer.
Patih Sidapaksa took the mission.
When he arrived in the jungle, he saw a young deer. He pointed his arrow to the deer. Unfortunately, he missed the target. He ran after the deer. He was running and running until he arrived at a hut. PatihSidapaksa knocked the door.
A young and beautiful girl opened the door. She was very beautiful. PatihSidapaksa fell in love at the first sight.“How can I help you Sir?” asked the girl.
“I…I…am looking for a young deer”, Patih Sidapaksa was speechless.
“You can find a lot of deer in the jungle. But it’s already late and it will be dark soon. You can continue hunting tomorrow morning. You can come and spend the night here. Both my father and I are happy to welcome you”, said the girl.
Patih Sidapaksa accepted the offer.
He introduced himself. The girl’s name was Sri Tanjung and her father’s name was Ki Buyut.
In the morning, Patih Sidapaksa continued his hunting and after he got a young deer he returned to the hut.
He came back because he wanted to marry Sri Tanjung. Luckily, Sri Tanjung also loved him.
Later Patih Sidapaksa asked them to join him to the palace. The King was very happy Patih Sidapaksabrought him a young deer. However he was also amazed by the beauty of Sri Tanjung.
The King also fell in love with her. The King had a bad plan. He wanted to marry Sri Tanjung. So he gavePatih Sidapaksa a very difficult mission. The King asked Patih Sidapaksa to give him three golden rings from Indran Kingdom. Patih Sidapaksa knew the mission was more difficult than hunting a young deer.Indran Kingdom was not an ordinary kingdom. It was a kingdom of criminals! No one ever came back after going there. However he still accepted the mission. And before he left, he asked Sri Tanjung to wait for him.
After Patih Sidapaksa left, the King approached Sri Tanjung. He proposed Sri Tanjung to marry him. He promised Sri Tanjung to be a queen. She did not accept the proposal. She loved Patih Sidapaksa and she already promised to wait for him. The King was angry and put her in the jail.
Luckily, Patih Sidapaksa could do the mission and came back to the palace. Sadly he could not meet SriTanjung. The King lied. He said Sri Tanjung was in jail because she asked the King to marry her. The King said Sri Tanjung wanted to be a queen. At first Patih Sidapaksa believed the King. But Sri Tanjung then said.
“Throw me to the river. If the river smells good, it means I’m innocent. However if the river smells bad, then the King is lying”, said Sri Tanjung.
Patih Sidapaksa then threw her into the river. Amazingly, the river smelled good. Patih Sidapaksa was very sorry. Sri Tanjung died. He regretted not to believe her.
When the river smelled good, people instantly said Banyuwangi. Banyu means water and Wangi means good smell. Since then the place has been named Banyuwangi.
Jaka Tarub dan Nawang Wulan
Folklore from East Java
Jaka Tarub was a handsome young man. He was very popular in the village. Many young girls fell in love with him. However Jaka Tarub thought that they were not beautiful enough to be his wife. That’s why he was still single. He wanted to have a very beautiful wife.
As always, Jaka Tarub went to the forest to collect some woods. Suddenly he heard some noise from the waterfall. He was curious. The noise was from the girls taking a bath in the waterfall.
Slowly, Jaka Tarub walked to the area. When he arrived there, he saw seven beautiful girls taking a bath. He was really amazed by their beauty. After they were finished, the girls slowly took their shawls. Amazingly after they wore the shawls, they flew to the sky. They were not humans. They were fairies!
After that Jaka Tarub went home. He was very restless. He was still thinking about those seven beautiful girls.
On the next day, Jaka Tarub then decided to go back to the waterfall. When the fairies were taking a bath, he stole one of their shawls. And that made one fairy could not fly back to the sky. She cried. Jaka Tarub then approached her.
“What’s wrong? Why are you crying?”
“I lost my shawl. I cannot go back home. All my sisters have left me. My name is Nawang Wulan. I will give you anything if you can find my shawl.”
“I’ll help you. But if we can’t find it, you can stay at my house. You can be my wife,” said Jaka Tarub.
Then Jaka Tarub pretended to look for the shawl. And of course they could not find it. After that they went toJaka Tarub’s home. Later they got married.
They had a baby girl. They had a happy life. They always had enough rice to eat. They did not have to work hard like their neighbors. It was because Nawang Wulan used her magic in cooking.
One day, Jaka Tarub asked her about the magic. Nawang Wulan did not tell him the secret and asked him not to open the cooking pan’s lid. She said that if Jaka Tarub opened the lid, they had to work hard to get a lot of rice to cook.
One day, Jaka Tarub was really curious. He then opened the cooking pan’s lid. He saw there was only a small portion of rice to cook. When she got home, Nawang Wulan knew that Jaka Tarub had opened the lid. She was angry because she already lost the magic in cooking. Now she had to take a big portion of rice to cook.
Slowly there was not enough rice in the silo. And when Nawang Wulan wanted to take the last portion of rice, she found her shawl. Jaka Tarub hid the shawl in the silo. Nawang Wulan was really happy.
She then said, “I will go home now. Take care of our daughter. When there is a full moon, take her out of the house and I’ll come together.”

Nawang Wulan then flew to the sky. Jaka Tarub was really sad. And to keep the promise, Jaka Tarubalways went out of the house with his daughter when there was a full moon. But Nawang Wulan never came back.

North Sumatra mapMalin Kundang

Folklore from Sumatra

Once upon a time, on the north coast of Sumatra lived a poor woman and his son. The boy was called Malin Kundang. They didn’t earn much as fishing was their only source of income.
Malin Kundang grew up as a skillful young boy. He always helps his mother to earn some money. However, as they were only fisherman’s helper, they still lived in poverty. “Mother, what if I sail overseas?” asked Malin Kundang one day to his mother. Her mother didn’t agree but Malin Kundang had made up his mind.
“Mother, if I stay here, I’ll always be a poor man. I want to be a successful person,” urged Malin kundang. His mother wiped her tears, “If you really want to go, I can’t stop you. I could only pray to God for you to gain success in life,” said his mother wisely. “But, promise me, you’ll come home.”
In the next morning, Malin Kundang was ready to go. Three days ago, he met one of the successful ship’s crew. Malin was offered to join him. “Take a good care of yourself, son,” said Malin Kundang’s mother as she gave him some food supplies. “Yes, Mother,” Malin Kundang said. “You too have to take a good care of yourself. I’ll keep in touch with you,” he continued before kissing his mother’s hand. Before Malin stepped onto the ship, Malin’s mother hugged him tight as if she didn’t want to let him go.
It had been three months since Malin Kundang left his mother. As his mother had predicted before, he hadn’t contacted her yet. Every morning, she stood on the pier. She wished to see the ship that brought Malin kundang home. Every day and night, she prayed to the God for her son’s safety. There was so much prayer that had been said due to her deep love for Malin Kundang. Even though it’s been a year she had not heard any news from Malin Kundang, she kept waiting and praying for him.
After several years waiting without any news, Malin Kundang’s mother was suddenly surprised by the arrival of a big ship in the pier where she usually stood to wait for her son. When the ship finally pulled over, Malin Kundang’s mother saw a man who looked wealthy stepping down a ladder along with a beautiful woman. She could not be wrong. Her blurry eyes still easily recognized him. The man was Malin Kundang, her son. Malin Kundang’s mother quickly went to see her beloved son. “Malin, you’re back, son!” said Malin Kundang’s mother and without hesitation, she came running to hug Malin Kundang,“I miss you so much.” But, Malin Kundang didn’t show any respond. He was ashamed to admit his own mother in front of his beautiful wife.“You’re not my Mother. I don’t know you. My mother would never wear such ragged and ugly clothes,” said Malin Kundang as he release his mother embrace. Malin Kundang’s mother take a step back, “Malin…You don’t recognize me? I’m your mother!” she said sadly.
Malin Kundang’s face was as cold as ice. “Guard, take this old women out of here,” Malin Kundang ordered his bodyguard. “Give her some money so she won’t disturb me again!” Malin Kundang’s mother cried as she was dragged by the bodyguard,”Malin… my son. Why do you treat your own mother like this?” Malin Kundang ignored his mother and ordered the ship crews to set sail. Malin Kundang’s mother sat alone in the pier. Her heart was so hurt, she cried and cried. “Dear God, if he isn’t my son, please let him have a save journey. But if he is, I cursed him to become a stone,” she prayed to the God. I
n the quiet sea, suddenly the wind blew so hard and a thunderstorm came. Malin Kundang’s huge ship was wrecked. He was thrown by the wave out of his ship, and fell on a small island. Suddenly, his whole body turned into stone. He was punished for not admitting his own mother.




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