Before we leave, Uncle Peter buys copies of the photos we had taken under the water to keep as a reminder of the awesome experience. I glance down at the photo of Agung and I. There are fish swimming all around us, there’s a bright yellow and blue one right next to my face, which I don’t remember seeing. I must have been so panicked that I didn’t really get to take in the wonders of the ocean life. I feel a slight pang of regret, but decide there is no way I’m ever going to try it again, so the photo is just going to have to be enough.
We take a short taxi ride to a busy area, with shops lining both sides of the road and down along all the side streets. They all look like market stalls, with t-shirts, caps, sunglasses and watches pouring out from each storefront. There are Indonesian people sitting on stools outside their stores, some of them are with their family, holding babies. Some children are sitting on the ground playing games, or doing crafts. There are people bustling about everywhere, it’s hard to focus on anything, when there is so much happening around me at once.
“We need to find a good coffee shop and have a decent feed.” Uncle Peter reaches out to direct Quentin and I to walk ahead of him. People are walking single file in both directions along the skinny tiled pathway. Sometimes the path goes really skinny and the person walking closest to the road has to step out into traffic and scoot along to where the path widens enough to allow them to walk on it. Uncle Peter makes us walk closest to the shopping stalls, so we don’t have to step out onto the road.
As we walk, people hold out items they are trying to sell, calling out prices and offering ‘special price’ deals. We shake our heads and continue along the path, looking for a place to sit and eat. I spot a cafe up ahead and point it out to Quentin, who is walking in front of me. We stop when we reach it and Aunt Kathy shakes her head and tells us to keep walking. Eventually we find a place that Aunt Kathy likes and we sit down and browse the menu. Quentin and I both order juice, I decide to try the banana and strawberry, while he decides to try the coconut. When our drinks come out, we are amazed to find that Quentin’s drink actually comes in a coconut. There are two small holes in the hard coconut shell, one of which has a yellow straw coming out of it. Quentin’s face lights up and he holds the coconut in the air to allow Aunt Kathy to take a picture. He takes a sip and nods in delight, then offers it to me to try. I have to use both hands to hold the coconut, and I take a small sip and the taste explodes in my mouth. I never knew coconut could taste so refreshing and sweet.
Our meal orders arrive not long after and I stare at my plate in horror. Food is piled up on the large plate and I know that no matter how hard I try, I will never be able to eat it all. My thoughts drift to the little boy at the orphanage who cried over being able to have a single banana and instantly feel guilty. What would he think of the amount of food I have sitting in front of me right now?
“You don’t have to eat it all.” Uncle Peter smiles over at me.
“I know, but I really shouldn’t waste any.” I see Uncle Peter, Aunt Kathy and Quentin all look down at their meals and then at each other. I can tell that we are all thinking about the children at the orphanage and taking a moment to reflect on just how lucky we all are.
I dig out the remainder of my Indonesian money and hand it to Aunt Kathy. “I want to save the rest of my money to help children like Agus to go to school and have enough food to get them through the day without feeling hungry. There is nothing I want to buy that could ever be more important.”
Quentin digs out his remaining money and hands it to her too. “I want to help too, coz my mummy is a orphan and I wouldn’t want her to go hungry.”
Aunt Kathy reaches up and wipes a tear from her face with the back her hand. “I am so proud of you two.” She tucks our money into a side pocket of her bag and promises to keep it for our business.
At that moment an idea for a name comes to me. “What about the Kids In Business? We are kids running a business to make money to help other kids. Everything about it is kids business?”
“Yeeeaah” Quentin straightens up in his chair, looking mighty proud, as though he was the one who had come up with the name.
“I love it” Aunt Kathy smiles and Uncle Peter nods in approval.
“Maybe you should spell it differently, to make it more eye catching, like change the s’s to z’s?” Uncle Peter grabs a napkin and asks the waitress for a pen. He writes down the name ‘Kidz In Biznezz’ Quentin loves the idea and frantically nods his head in approval. But I’m not so keen.
“Won’t that make us look uneducated? The whole point of the business is to help kids go to school, we don’t want to make it look like it’s run by people who don’t know how to spell.”
Uncle Peter purses his lips and nods his head “Fair enough, was just an idea. I get your point though.”
We talk through lunch about the Kids In Business and I get hell excited, feeling like I can really make a difference for orphans and foster children around the world. I can’t wait to tell Paige about it and about the orphanages we visited. I know she will be upset that she didn’t get to visit them with us, but she will most likely love to help with the business.
We spend the rest of the day browsing through stalls and Aunt Kathy and Uncle Peter buy bags upon bags of new clothes, all of them for us and Paige.
They even buy us a heap of firecrackers and once we get back to the hotel and the sun has completely gone down, we all head down to the beach and find a safe spot where there aren’t any other people around. Uncle Peter pushes the firecrackers into the soft sand and lights the first one and runs back over to us. We wait until the spark makes it’s way along the string pocking out from the bottom of the firecracker, each of us staring intently, waiting for it to erupt. At first nothing happens, then suddenly a loud whistling sound fills the air, as it launches into the sky, then bright colours explode across the pitch black, lighting up our faces, as we all stare at it in awe. As quickly as the colour filled the sky, it fizzles out and we are once again surrounded in darkness.
Uncle Peter races over to the other firecrackers, waving his arm motioning for Quentin and I to follow. He hands us each one of the lighters he bought from the fireworks salesman and lets us light one of the firecrackers each. He makes us hold our faces as far from the wick as possible and holds our hands as we both light them at the same time, then we all run off laughing as soon as they begin to spark.
This time a loud crack whips through the air, as they both go whizzing into the sky side by side, twisting and turning, leaving a bright trail behind them, then the sky is filled with an array of brilliant colour and we all stand smiling up at the artwork we created in the heavens.