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The Controversial Story of a Teacher Who Started Dating His 13-Year-Old Student and Married Her When She Turned 20

This is a somewhat older story that was originally reported by media primarily in Indonesia and other East-Asian countries back in 2018. It got a lot of attention because it touched on a very taboo topic – the romantic relationship between an adult male teacher and a 13-year-old schoolgirl.

Erwin Pangaila was 27 when he fell in love with a junior high school student at the SMP Negeri 2 Tenga school, in Sulawesi Utara, Indonesia. In fact, it was 13-year-old Vinda Virginia who first noticed and approached him. She happened to walk by his classroom saw him writing on the blackboard and immediately fell for his broad shoulders and athletic physique. She wasn’t the only girl in school to have a crush on Erwin, but she was determined to be the one that won his heart. She started staying behind after classes to ask him questions and eventually, their student-teacher relationship turned into a romantic one.

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103-Year-Old Man Marries 27-Year-Old Woman in Controversial Arranged Union

Since late last month, Indonesian social media has been buzzing with news of a controversial wedding in South Sulawesi, where a 103-year-old Dutch colonial war veteran recently married a 27-year-old woman.

Photos and videos of the unlikely couple on their wedding day have been doing the rounds online for over a week now, sparking both outrage and humorous comments. There are also those who can’t believe the wedding was for real, but several Indonesian news outlets have confirmed that 103-year-old Puang Katte married a 27-year-old woman named Indo Alang in the District of Siwa, South SulawesiThe groom, who is reportedly a widower, fought in the Dutch colonial war (1945 – 1949).

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Indonesia’s Real-Life Spiderman Fights Littering and Plastic Pollution

After struggling to convince members of his community to join him in making their streets and beaches cleaner by picking up trash, an Indonesian man put on a superhero outfit in hopes of becoming more convincing.

Rudi Hartono, a cafe worker from Pare-Pare, South Sulawesi, had long been struggling to persuade residents of his small coastal community to get more involved in keeping their home clean by picking up the plastic trash strewn on streets and beaches, but had had little success. But then he put on a Spiderman suit just to amuse his nephew, and people took notice. He accidentally became somewhat of a local role-model, and people started following his example.

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Indonesian Bakery Makes Delicious-Looking Cakes Out of Instant Noodles

The cakes below may look perfect to satisfy your sweet tooth, but they’re actually not desserts at all. They’re made of instant noodles and topped with stuff like chicken gulai (curry stew), opor (coconut milk stew) and rendang (beef simmered in coconut and spices).

The people at Tot Aw (short for totally awesome) bakery in Jakarta, Indonesia have getting a lot of attention lately and it’s all due to their unusual cakes. Instead of sweet sponge and sweet cream and toppings, they are made of Indomie noodles shaped as tiered cakes and topped with all kinds of foods, like meatballs, chicken or salted cuttlefish. The squiggly creations are apparently quite popular at weddings, birthdays and other events.

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You Can Get a Cash Prize for Removing a Tyre from a Full-Grown Crocodile’s Neck

Indonesian officials are offering a monetary reward to whoever manages to remove a motorcycle tyre from the neck of a 13-foot-long crocodile.

The full-grown crocodile has reportedly been wearing the tire around its neck since 2016, but authorities in Palu, the capital of Central Sulawesi, are worried that it may end up strangling the reptile, so they are turning to the public for help. In 2018, conservationist and “animal whisperer” Muhammad Panji tried to remove the tire, and later that year the local conservation office tried luring the 4-meter-long crocodile with food. Both attempts proved unsuccessful so Palu officials are now hoping that brave locals can do the impossible for an unspecified cash prize.

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Teen Goes on Fishing Trip, Gets Stabbed in the Neck by Jumping Needlefish

A 16-year-old Indonesian boy suffered a horrific injury to his neck after a needlefish suddenly jumped out of the water and literally pierced his neck clean through, knocking him out of the boat he was fishing from.

The freak accident occurred on January 18, when 16-year-old Muhammad Idul and his friend Sari decided to go on a late-night fishing trip. The boys went out to sea in Buton, off the South East Sulawesi province, and everything went according to plan until Sari turned on his flashlight, which allegedly caused a needlefish to suddenly leap out of the water and lodge its pointy, long jaws in Muhammad’s neck, piercing it from his chin to the base of the skull. Not only did the force of the attack knock him out of the boat, but the thrashing fish, which remained dodged in his neck, almost made him drown.

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Indonesian Restaurant Gives You a Fish Pedicure While You Eat

If the idea of having dozens of fish nibbling at your toes while you enjoy some traditional Indonesian cuisine sounds intriguing, you may want to check out this unique restaurant in Indonesia’s cultural capital of Yogyakarta.

Located far away from the city center, the Soto Cokro Kembang restaurant originally relied on a relaxing flower garden to attract patrons exhausted by the stress of urban life. However, when the owner’s father had the idea of turning the abandoned cow stalls nearby into a unique aquatic eating space, no one imagined that the quaint eatery would end up attracting people from all around the island nation. Owner Imam Nur says that the attention Soto Cokro Kembang is currently getting in the news and on social media is beyond what he ever imagined.

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Family Too Poor to Buy Milk Feeds Baby with 1.5 Liters of Coffee a Day

News on an Indonesia toddler who has been living on brewed coffee for the last eight months, because her young parents were too poor to afford formula or cow’s milk, recently shocked millions in East Asia.

Hadijah Haura, a 14-month-old girl from the village of Tonro Lima Village, in Indonesia’s West Sulawesi province, consume 3 baby bottles of coffee – around 1.5 liters – every day. That’s more than most grown-ups. She’s been consuming the caffeine-rich drink daily since she was just six-months-old, because her young parents couldn’t afford to buy milk for her. Hadijah has been practically living on coffee for half her life, but appears to be growing at a normal rate and hasn’t had any serious medical problems yet. Her parents are aware that coffee is not fit for a toddler, but claims that they had no choice, because they had nothing else to give their daughter.

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How a Quirky Village Pond in Indonesia Became an Underwater Selfie Hot-Spot

It’s not very common for small ponds to have their own Instagram accounts, let alone tens of thousands of followers, but then again Umbul Ponggok is not your usual village pond.

Located in Indonesia’s Central Java region, Umbul Ponggok is a small pond measuring just 20 meters by 50 meters, but boasting the cleanest water imaginable. It is continuously fed with fresh water from 40 different springs, at a rate of 800 liters per second, so the water is always crystal clear. It’s this fascinating property that makes Umbul Ponggok an ideal location for underwater selfies, and in the age of Instagram you’d best believe people are taking advantage of it.

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27-Year-Old Woman Marries 83-Year-Old Grandpa, Claims It Was Love at First Sight

The unlikely love story between a 27-year-old woman and an 83-year-old famous shaman in Indonesia’s Central Java province has been making headlines in the Asian country for the past week. Despite the controversy regarding the age difference between them, the young woman claims she fell in love with her new husband the moment she saw him.

27-year-old Nuraeni first met 83-year-old Sudirgo in July, when the girl accompanied her parents to the famous shaman’s house in Desa Jatilaba, to seek his advice. It was then and there that the young woman says she fell in love with Nuraeni, and even though she left with her family, she kept finding excuses to visit the grandfather of eight. She even asked him to visit her at her family’s home, and even though the signs were pretty clear, the 83-year-old says he didn’t even consider a romantic relationship because of his advanced age. However, he could only resist love so long, and after confessing his feeling to Nuraeni and asking her to marry him, she accepted.

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The Indonesian Island That Somehow Makes Mammals Smaller

Ever since the remains of “Homo Florensis”, an extinct species of unusually short humans, were discovered on Flores Island, in eastern Indonesia, scientists have been fascinated with this patch of land, which apparently has the power to somehow make mammals shorter and smaller.

It all began in 2004, when the remains of a human who would have been about 1.1 m in height were discovered at Liang Bua cave. Partial skeletons of nine other individuals were subsequently unearthed and analysis showed that they were part of a yet unknown species of the “Homo” genus named Homo Florensis. It’s estimated that they lived on Flores Island roughly 190,000 to 50,000 years ago. With an average height of just 1.1 meters, they were shorter than modern pygmies which earned them the nickname of ‘real-life hobbits’. Scientists believed they were the ancestors of the pygmies currently living on Flores Island, which made perfect sense, only it turns out that the two have nothing in common. If anything, both species had been independently “shrunk” by the island itself.

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Indonesian Man Walks Backwards 800 Km to Meet the President

An Indonesian man has been making news headlines around the world for embarking on a unique challenge to save the environment. 43-year-old  Medi Bastoni is walking backward some 800 kilometers, from his village in East Java all the way to the capital Jakarta, to meet the president.

Bastoni set off from his home village of Dono, in East Java, on Jul. 18 and opes to reach the presidential palace in Jakarta in time to celebrate Indonesia’s 74th Independence Day on August 17, alongside President Joko Widodo. The main goal of his unique endeavor is to ask Indonesia’s president for a symbolic tree seed, to be planted in the forests on Mount Wills, near his village, to raise awareness about preserving the rainforest. He claims activists are already fighting to preserve the environment, but a symbolic gesture by the president would boost their efforts even more. And his willing to walk backwards for 800km just to meet Indonesia’s leader.

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Parents Name Son “Google” Hoping It Will Give Him a Leg Up in Life

A baby in Indonesia has been awarded the title of “world’s strangest name” after it was revealed that his parents legally registered him as “Google”; no surname or middle name, just Google, just like the search engine.

The eight-month-old boy’s father, 31-year-old Andi Cahya Saputra, told Indonesian media that he first contemplated the idea of giving his child a tech-related name when his wife was seven months pregnant. Before that, he had considered more common names, like Albar Dirgantara Putra, or names mentioned in the Quran, but in the end he decided that none of them were quite right. So he ended up looking at names of technology companies and products like “Windows, iPhone, Microsoft and iOS”, and ultimately settled on Google. Although the mother didn’t really like the idea at first, she ultimately agreed and now they have a boy named after the world’s most popular internet search engine.

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Woman Goes Viral for Reviewing Brands of Soap on How Good They Taste

This Indonesian woman who loves to lick various brands of hand soap and rate them by how good they taste is giving the phrase “clean eating” a whole new meaning.

Khosik Assyifa, a young woman from Indonesia’s East Java province, has become an unlikely Instagram sensation thanks to her bizarre eating habits. Assyifa has been posting videos that show her licking bars of hand soap and reviewing them based on taste. Just so we’re clear, she doesn’t just touch the soap bars with the tip of her tongue to get a taste, but licks and slurps them like you would an ice-lolly. She appears to be enjoying the taste almost as much as people love watching her do it. Her soap-eating videos receive thousands of likes and comments, including suggestions on what soap brands she should try next.

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Indonesian Police Apologizes for Using Two-Meter Live Snake During Interrogation

Police in Papua’s Jayawijaya district, Indonesia, issued a public apology after a video showing an alleged thief being interrogated by security forces using a two-meter live snake went viral online.

Human rights advocates in Indonesia are condemning the use of a live snake during the interrogation of an alleged thief in Western New Guinea. In a video doing the rounds on social media, a barefoot, handcuffed man can be seen squirming and screaming as police officers push a live snake in his face and threaten to put in his mouth and in his pants. Later, the reptile is also seen wrapped around the suspect’s neck, as police try to get a confession out of him about some stolen phones.

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