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Bobby Kuhuwael

Conducted on: 23-05-2017
Published on: 30-06-2017 
Written by: Ingrid Bremmers
Photographer: Teresa Cancola

“In life we want to look for happiness. But whatever we find, it will never be enough.”

As soon as we arrived in the village, we called the yellow house underneath the rock the most beautiful house in the village. The house, situated right next to the water gave us the feeling like we arrived at one of those places on a postcard. Yes, that is what it was, a postcard. A postcard that will give you a sense of belonging. Of being at home.

This time, we were with the four of us. No one from the government joined us. As soon as we took our shoes off in front of the porch, we slowly walked up to the door. “Permisi, permisi. Bapa?” When nobody replied we went further into the house and there he was. His face serious but friendly, his eyes curious but comfortable. He gave us permission to sit down in the meeting room as he took place right next to the door. As always, Cici started to introduce the topics and the project, and afterwards we introduced ourselves. Like we (almost) always did. “Hi, I am Ingrid from the Netherlands.” “Hi, I am Teresa from Austria.” “Hi, I am Tessa. Also from the Netherlands.” As soon as the introduction ended we asked our first question about his family. And of course, we could not forget talking about the yellow house. The yellow house, in which he and his family have been living for four years. Before that he lived somewhere else in Kaibobo. The village in which he was born in but had to leave behind during the war between 1999 and 2001. He went to Ambon. During his time here he learned how to fish since he was working on a big boat. However, he did not feel comfortable here because of the physicality of the work.

When he came back to the Kaibobo he wanted to develop himself and the village. He saw potential when it came to fishing. He started to work on a small boat and used all his experience that he gained in Ambon. From that moment on his business has developed tremendously. He has become the employer of sixteen people and distributes his fish to the Waisarisa market and Ambon. The latter to which he goes six days a week to sell it to an intermediate. Besides owning this business he has also been growing coconut trees, Cengkeh and Nutmeg. While he was talking about the development of both his businesses he was very passionate and emotional. “Yes, I give my happiness a ten. Why you ask? Because I am blessed all the time.”

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