WHERE WE REPORT


Translate page with Google

Story Publication logo April 30, 2020

The Pig Incantation of Teu Takbabalen (bahasa Indonesia)

Country:

Author:
West Sumatra, Siberut Island. Image by Gudkov Andrey / Shutterstock. Indonesia, 2010.
English

Tropical rainforests on Siberut Island, Mentawai Islands, West Sumatra have long been a global...

In the gloom of dawn in the jungle in Sinindiu, Simatalu, which is situated in West Siberut of the Mentawai Islands, Teu Takabalen and his wife, Sikalabai, were already busy at work. They were starting their mid-march day. Teu Takbabalen raised sago stems soaked in the river not far from their pigsty. He carried it on his shoulders from the river and cut the sago stems into small parts. The split sago stems were then given to the pigs in the wooden fence in his yard. About a hundred large and small pigs scrambled to eat sago stem parts. The pigs sniff, squeak, and scramble around.

The Sikalabai is busy feeding chickens that are still in their stables which are quite high. The chickens are also given sagu stems that have been split. The white sago meat was immediately pecked by all the chickens in the cage.

Feeding pigs and chickens is an every-morning routine for the couple. Teu Takbabalen's pigsty looks like an uma, a traditional Mentawai house. On the veranda were several pig heads, monkey heads, and birds hanging from the wood. The animal's throat is usually for rituals.

To read the full story in Bahasa Indonesia, please click here.
Dalam keremangan pagi di tengah hutan Sinindiu, Simatalu, Siberut Barat, Kepulauan Mentawai, Teu Takabalen dan istrinya, Sikalabai, sudah sibuk bekerja memulai hari pada pertengahan Maret lalu. Teu Takbabalen mengangkat batang sagu yang direndam dalam sungai tak jauh dari rumah kandang babi mereka. Ia memanggulnya dari sungai dan membelah batang sagu itu menjadi belahan kecil. Batang sagu yang telah dia belah itu kemudian diberikan kepada babi-babi yang ada dalam pagar kayu di halaman. Sekitar seratus babi besar dan kecil berebutan memakan belahan batang sagu. Kawanan hewan ternak itu mengendus, menguik, dan saling seuduk.

Adapun Sikalabai sibuk memberi makan ayam yang masih berada di kandangnya yang cukup tinggi. Ayam-ayam itu juga diberi batang sagu yang telah dibelah-belah. Daging sagu yang berwarna putih itu langsung dipatuk semua ayam di kandang.

Kegiatan memberi makan babi dan ayam itu menjadi rutinitas pasangan suami-istri tersebut saban pagi di rumah kandang babi mereka. Rumah kandang babi Teu Takbabalen mirip uma, rumah tradisional Mentawai. Di berandanya ada beberapa tengkorak kepala babi, kepala monyet, dan burung yang digantung di kayu. Tengorak hewan itu biasanya untuk ritual.

RELATED CONTENT