The Big Durian: a megalopolises

I have to confess I have learnt two new words today: durian which is a fruit and megalopolises which is a very large city.  Both these words are used to describe Jakarta, the 14th largest city in South East Asia by population.  Why a Big Durian? Because (apparently) like the fruit the city stinks and repulses first time visitors just as the fruit repulses first time eaters. You either love it or hate it, like the city.

Here is the fruit: 

Here is the city: 

 

But, like the fruit, Jakarta is a city where you have to peel away the layers and there are parts, like the Old Town, which have an air of something else about them.

 

This next watercolour shows something different: perhaps in the old town or just a backstreet somewhere as the frenetic life of the city seems far away.  It is signed but the signature is illegible.  There is the address of the gallery in which it was bought on the back but I wasn’t able to find a website for it so it might no longer exist.  In any case I think this is a very good watercolour and I suspect it was bought by someone who visited Jakarta or perhaps even lived there.

  

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