In football, a nutmeg is when a player manages to put the ball through an opposing player's legs. When performed through a goalkeeper’s legs, thus resulting in a goal, it looks even worse. And that scenario seems to exemplify the latest epistle from the UK government regarding traveling through or residing in Indonesia.
The Foreign Commonwealth Office (FCO) of H.M. Government has seemingly waited to inform us of what a dangerous place Indonesia is until H.E. Charles Humphrey CMG and his wife, Enid, recently Our Man (and his wife) at the Embassy, have retired and gone back to Blighty.
Yep, tourists and residents are urged to read the latest Travel Advisory
, issued yesterday, which has changed but little in the past five years.We advise againt
) all but essential travel to Maluku Province, especially Ambon, which was the scene of serious civil unrest between 1999 and 2002. The region has continued to experience violence which can unexpectedly increase in intensity. Violence resulting from civil unrest in Ambon has resulted in a number of deaths and serious injuries. On 25 April 2007, a bomb attack in a market in Ambon saw eight people injured, one of whom suffered serious injuries. The situation in Maluku and North Maluku remains unsettled.
Charles and Humphrey were interviewed for the March issue of Update, the monthly magazine of the British Chamber of Commerce. He said that "both Enid and I have enjoyed ... travelling, both officially and privately, ... but there are still a number of places unvisited. We had been planning a trip to Ternate and Banda and I think we shall slip back quietly without telling anyone and do the trip later on.
It's a good job you've retired Sir Charles, or the FCO might have demoted you, eh?
And, yes, Ternate, which is a quite magnificent island north of Ambon is well worth visiting for its very strange flora and fauna ~ and I’m not referring to the contestants in the disputed gubernatorial election. Banda, way south of Ambon, is the setting for the denouement of the British involvement in the Spice Trade of this part of the world, and the island is absolutely delightful, with remnants of Dutch villas and a fort. Sir Charles and Lady Enid are advised to read Nathaniel's Nutmeg : Or, the True and Incredible Adventure of the Spice Trader Who Changed the Course of History
, if they haven’t already, in order to really experience time travel.
Son.No.1 and I spent six weeks in the Molluccas 13/14 years ago, admittedly before the troubles erupted, and given the time I'd go back like a shot, if you'll excuse the expression.
You can find trouble wherever you go in the world, and Indonesia, whilst being no exception, is much less hazardous than most - if you discount the transport problems which the Advisory does rightly focus on at some length.