Tuesday. We are finally able to start normal travel activities.

Usually, shopping is not even on my list of things to do while traveling. I’m interested in joyful and illuminating experiences, not acquisition. For Jogja, I’m making an exception, because the array of handmade batik clothing, at absurdly low prices, is unique.

Our desination is walking distance from the hotel, on Mariboro, a street lined with dozens of batik stores. The stores have fixed prices, high enough to cover their overhead. But farther down the street, there’s a big warehouse-type structure with a public market; hundreds (maybe thousands!) of little stalls, where the prices are negotiable. In fact, they beg you to bargain with them. I believe the ladies running these shops get bored with their tiny space and finite supply of clothes. They crave human interaction, and the psychological engagement of bargaining is what makes their day.

Of course most of our shopping here is for gifts, but we do manage to add a bit of personal finery for ourselves.

2 thoughts on “Batik

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