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Third annual Victorian Tea for breast cancer COMMUNAUTÉ • COMMUNITY

Rubber time By Anne Donovan Special to the Reflet-News

Foreword: This article, slightly different from the others I have written in this series, explores the concept of time in Bali. I first came across the term Rubber Time while perusing through the book Time, Rites And Festivals in Bali published in 2013. The term seemed well suited to what I have always called the ‘hot weather syndrome’, where people’s ability to reach one’s destina- tion while confronted with the hot sun, suddenly decreases considerably. Of course, I was never really able to explain the phenomenon, as a simple case of leaving earlier would have solved this quandary or so I thought. Suffice it to say that Balinese do not adhere to the same rigid rhythm of time as West- erners do. Although they follow to some degree the standard Gregorian calendar, they also follow a 210-day Pawukon calendar as well as the Saka lunar calendar. Their tem- poral reality is based on the next celebration to be held, and the ritual obligations that precede, not on which day of the week they stand. The fact that most Balinese work every day or what we would call seven days a week, certainly makes this possible. It would of course take much more than 25 days of part-time reading and question seeking to understand how Balinese construct their time and routines surrounding these very complex calendars, but I can tell you that there are good days and bad days for every, and any activity. You need a haircut? Our guide tells us Monday andWednes- day are good days, but to avoid Sunday at all cost. Of course another day of the week may also be favourable depending on where the moon happens to be in its cyclical rotation, or how your astrological sign is influenced by that particular week’s cycle; so make sure you consult your Pawukon calendar before leaving the house. Intertwined with time and direction there is also the ‘banned’ notion of caste; where your birth plays a role within your temporal place on earth. In India as in Indonesia, it lives on, too ingrained in the countries’cultural values to vanish completely. I am always very reluctant, as an outsider, to speak of this or even of a country’s religious or moral beliefs, as I am neither an expert nor a follower, which tells me that my occidental inter- pretation may certainly be biased, and therefore inaccurate. An example of this is when a Balinese tour guide proudly told me howmen and women in Bali are equal (implicitly comparing Bali’s culture to the Muslim part of Indonesia). Upon hearing this, I couldn’t help but smile inwardly, knowing that although women may not be as constricted as their counterpart in the rest of the country, we see daily evidence of a patriarchal soci- ety. But from what I have heard, read, and observed, Balinese have a developed sense of direction. There is no need to observe the sun or stars; they have a particular connec- tion with their cosmic structure of direction, place and time. This triad being also linked back to the Hindu faith of good, bad, and the central position where good and bad can be balanced. From private temples to house furniture to the placement of your shoes, and the daily offerings to the spirits, orientation is key to a cosmic balance. So although I may not be able to explain and follow Pawukon and Saka time, the questions these time calculators have raised within our family have brought us to speak once again of world religions and beliefs; a topic that fascinates me, and that has domi- nated many of our family conversations these past few months. What about the legacy of Romans regarding time as we know it, and what about the origin of the year zero? Our family’s questions about the understanding of the world have given a meaning to our travels, which goes beyond the mere discovery of other cultures, and for which I am very grateful. I wish I could immerse myself in researching the origins of these cycles and time cal- culations, but our‘rubber time’is almost up, and soon, the very inflexibleWestern rendi- tion of the Gregorian calendar will be calling my name.

Photo Candice Vetter

Claire Desrochers and Marie-Claire Ivanski, the two Lady Claires (at back), held the third annual Victorian Tea and Garden Tour at Desrochers’ home near Embrun on Saturday, June 21. Desrochers hosted, including supplying and preparing three-quarters of the food for the 120 attendees served in three sittings by several volunteers. The formal tea raised $3000 for breast cancer research. Ivanski has now participated in raising over $400,000 for the cause.

Tournoi de golf de la paroisse de Limoges

Photo Annie Lafortune

Le comité de la paroisse de Limoges a tenu son tournoi de golf le week-end dernier sous un soleil radieux. Rhéal Giroux, président de la paroisse St-Viateur de Limoges, et son frère René Giroux, président du tournoi de golf (à droite), ont recueilli 7000$ grâce aux 72 joueurs qui se sont présentés sur le green et grâce au don de 1000$ de la Caisse populaire de Limoges.

Cedric Ménard in a rice fields in East Bali. For more about the travels around the world of Anne Donovan and her family, go to

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