Pak Asep has a lot of different jobs, but every August he will go to Jakarta to sell red and white decorations!
How long have you been here, pak?
Selling independence day decorations? Every year since 2008. Normally we start selling a month before independence day itself.
This isn’t your regular enterprise, right? What do you do normally?
Well, I take whatever opportunities come; driving an angkot (minibus), trading in the market, or other things. Sometimes I sell cement. Most of my friends are in the same position.
So, what will happen to the surplus after 17th august?
It will be stored with those of other traders, of course. We would even get new designs every two years.
That means all the materials are shared between people, then, pak?
That’s right, we have a group called ‘red and white warriors’ to prepare for independence day, the individual enterprises and flag materials. There are some who prefer to be alone, too; many people from Cirebon especially do this work.
All of you sell in Jakarta, pak?
Most in Jakarta, but some will also go to bogor, Tangerang or other places too.
Are the profits from this venture better than normal for you, or just the same?
Yeah they’re the same, no real increase. We just bring the spirit and energy - a tide of nationalism - the more the merrier!
This is also more pleasant than driving an angkot, right?
Yeah you’re right! There’s music, flags; maybe when people see this their spirits increase - we are one family of independence, we are happy! That’s what it’s like.
Thanks a lot bapak.