It was in June 1996 when we went to several of Wali Songo's graves but one I could remember well was atop Gunung Muria.
There's an army personnel guarding the donation box.
Not thinking of any adverse, we were about to push in the rupiah notes into the slot when swifly the army man swung out his loaded arm, placed it before the slot, for the money to be placed just on top of the box.
There's heapful of rupiah notes on the box - I was astonished seeing him sweeping the money with his loaded arm to his direction and into his trousers' pocket.
Local visitors did not bat their eyelids seeing such horrific incident but the army personnel's violation of trust trusted onto his sholuder really question my innerself of our sincere wish in seeing our neighbours a no pauper on their own land.
******We were visiting a kiyai (or was it an ustaz, not very sure) of one of the local pondoks (or was it pesantren, not very sure too) in Central Java. His wife changed into several kebayas for photo sessions with us.
Whenever her outfits changed, so did her genuine gemstone accessories, to complement her outlook.
Did she 'transform' herself into a model out of respect for her visitors? To convince us that Indonesians too are loaded people themselves?
Anyway, from that day onwards, no more donation was ever forwarded from us.
Even as were heading to another 'kabupaten', we were being sent off by another pesantren's girl students with their fingers manicured and painted. When asked why they did as such, their reply was, "Enggak apa-apa, Bu."
Cruel as it may be seen, even our frequent donation to one of the orphange in Batam was stopped too.
When money start to trinkle in, so does the number of family members.
Where once it was meant for the orphans and poor, it now covers not only the home's operator and his immediate family, but his step children and their families wanted their voices to be heard, too.
***From feedback, ordinary citizens in Tanjung Pinang and Batam felt the sincerity in the current government. They are feeling and seeing the positivity.
My sincere hope is, such personnel at Gunung Muria had returned monies not rightfully his and the likings of the religious leader's wife had been ticked off by the husband.