Saul Lolong (64) atau akrab disapa Om Buang mengencangkan tali kekang kuda di pangkalan bendi yang ada di pusat kota Tomohon. (Foto: publikreport.com)
Saul Lolong (64) atau akrab disapa Om Buang mengencangkan tali kekang kuda di pangkalan bendi yang ada di pusat kota Tomohon. (Foto: publikreport.com)

Saul, 64 years old Bendi Coachman

The Basic Rights of The People

Om Buang have wrestled with various jobs during his lifetime. In the 1960s, drove cow-pull-carriage to deliver bamboos to Manado city. Day and night, with friendly weather or not, he would have to drove for miles to sell his bamboos.

For him, working as a farmer and bendi coachman is a blessing from God. “Bendi as a traditional means of transportation must be preserve”, he added.

“We are sometimes chartered by the local governments to take tourists from domestic or international that visits Tomohon city or sometimes, we are hired directly by those tourists who are simply wishes to enjoy the beauty of Tomohon city with bendi.”

A Visit From Denmark

Unfortunately, to preserve bendi as Minahasan traditional means of transportation is quite challenging.”, he said. Bendi are being left behind since the turn-out of recent more modern means of transportation, local busses (Mikrolet), and now, online taxi.

“The young generations are not interested anymore to become bendi coachman. They prefer to relax and tend to choose jobs with prestige attach. Moreover when you talk about becoming a farmer. Many choose to be ojek driver or online taxi driver”, he add. | Translated by: VICTORIE WUWUNG

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