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Monday, April 21, 2014

Sunday night live: Ram fighting (Adu Domba) in West Java, Indonesia

Adu domba (ram fighting) is common in West Java, especially around Garut and Bandung. Villagers spend leisurely Sunday mornings watching these bouts.

For a tourist, finding the place hosting an adu domba is just as much a part of the adventure.
Relying on my sources, I head to Ciwaruga hamlet near Bandung, but the villagers there, excited to see a foreigner, tell me that their village hosted the event the week before and will host it again the week after.

One of the villagers makes a phone call: “My friend is not sure, but you can try your luck at Siliwangi.”

I race to Siliwangi, but it is the same story. However, this time a person who is called on the phone is absolutely certain that the bouts are taking place at Cilimus hamlet.

As soon as I turn away from the concrete expanse of Bandung to the narrow lane of Jl. Cimilus, I can hear the music -- a tell-tale sign that an adu domba is happening.
Soon I can figure out the arena, lined with people watching the contests. Just before this human wall, about 100 rams wait patiently. They have all come dressed up for this occasion, wearing elaborate necklaces. Some have their team names written on the necklaces.

They treat me with utter indifference as I walk past them toward the arena.
Two rams have just been brought in, evenly matched by weight, as is the rule for adu domba.
As soon as they see their opponent, they can’t control themselves.

Rest of the post at The Jakarta Post

1 comment:

wenxiang said...

Hi great story. I am going to Bandung this coming weekend and hope can witness this interesting ram fighting event. Would you mind to check with your sources where would this event takes place on 25th December? Thanks and hope to hear from you soon!