Babu Ngeblog

I have not read a lot for a while. But I did read the last book of Harry Potter, cookbooks (OK, might not be one of those heavy literature - ok, ok, it's not literature at all but they are what I most often read!) and now I'm reading Malcolm Gladwell's The Tipping Point. I also read my friends' blogs quite regularly. And at moments when I have absolutely nothing to do, I normally strengthen my social networking power in facebook. Hahaha....

Obviously I have nothing too important to do right now. There is a writing to do but it is not a case of life and death yet. So as I mentioned above, I was facebooking.

A friend posted a link that took me to a very interesting blog named Babu Ngeblog. As some of you may know, babu is the Javanese term for domestic helper/maid, which is most of the time apprehended as carrying a sort-of negative connotation. People prefer to use the word "pembantu" [maid/domestic helper] to babu for the sake of politeness. Ngeblog is the chic kind-of word for blogging. So yes, it means a blogging maid.

I am not sure what the perception of this profession is in the developed countries. But in Indonesia, it's sort of ranked as one of the lowest profile jobs and people tend to underestimate and look down on those having this job. Domestic helpers that go overseas for the similar profession take a slightly more pride than those who choose to stay in the country. Though I perceive they are still ranked the lowest in the country they work in. Negative presumptive adjectives like uneducated, stupid, having no common sense, lazy, etc, etc. are commonly adopted by the employers.

Rie Rie, the one of a kind migrant worker maid who works in Hong Kong, proves herself to be different. With her capacious ability in putting her thoughts into writing, supported with an excellent use of both EYD Bahasa Indonesia and English language, she represents the good and the bad of a life of a maid overseas.

If you speak Indonesian, you may get these impressions that I have got from reading Rie Rie's blog:
  • She is not ashamed of using the word babu to describe herself.
    How many of you are reluctant of stating what you do to people you just meet ('you' here doesn't refer to people having the agreed concept of a good job)? Say you work in the canteen of a prestigious company, would you state the name of the company first or would you state the type of job you're having?
  • She takes her daily chores and happenings with a light heart and learns from each of them.
    How many of us would just go upset with our work and rant about how annoying and selfish our bosses were or how crooked a system in our company over the phone conversation with our close friend for hours? Hmm, maybe almost all of us. Okay, well, she rants too in her blog. But she doesn't take it on and on like most of us do until we decide to finally file a resignation. Instead, she shares it in her blog and takes a lesson (or revenge) from it. Here is a funny example of it.
  • With her pervasive knowledge, she voices her thoughts and those in the same profession to fight for the migrant workers' rights.
    Some people would just wait until things change by themselves. Guess what, miracles don't happen today if you don't work on making them happen. She may not go to the embassy or human rights office or whatever institution to fight for her rights. But she does it in the best way she can do it - writing it. One can only hope that this blog gets more notice, and maybe one of us is ticked to help her and the others in promoting a better life for them.
This blog is the best read so far. Harry Potter is entertaining. The Tipping Point is smart. But Rie Rie's modest blog is everything Harry Potter and The Tipping Point have, with an additional adjective to describe it - INSPIRATIONAL.

Go read it. I am pretty sure you'll RSS it.


  1. oh...terimakasih, semoga ini tidak menjadikan saya jatuh atau sombong. Saya senang kalau ada yang membaca blog saya, apalagi sampai dengan mereviewnya, merasa tersanjung, terimakasih sekali. Salam kenal ya...

  2. hi Rie Rie, you deserve it. :) dan saya yakin kamu nggak akan jadi sombong karena ini. kamu pasti sudah tahu kemampuan kamu sendiri. salam kenal juga. hope the best for you.

  3. Wik,
    dr skin blog-nya aja lbh canggih dari aku :">