My parents and I

My parents had to pay for a Japanese Pendaftaran , an Indonesian word for registration, because we were now foreigners on Japanese territory.
All Dutchmen had to pay in 150 guilders ( or the same amount in Japanese money, especially printed already before the Japanese occupation of Indonesia) all the Dutch women had to pay 100 guilders, all the other Europeans and other white enemies from the Japanese had to pay the same amount. The Chinese had to pay as well, they were also the enemy from the Japanese since many years. The Chinese men had to pay 100 guiders for their Pendaftaran and the Chinese woman had to pay 80 guilders. This Japanese registration paper was for all the enemies above eighteen years old. Many people couldn’t pay all this money, so it had to be paid off per month. This Pendaftaran would keep us all out of the internee camps so the Japanese told our parents. That of course was a big lie, and moreover, it was also pure robbery.

The Indonesian police passed by and told my parents that they had to seal a part of the radio, so that we only had a choice of a limited group of radio stations, all in Malay and Japanese of course. Luckily we still had a telephone, so my parents could contact my uncle and aunt, and some of their friends. They couldn’t talk too long, because that could cause problems and this was the last thing we wanted, we all had to be very careful.
My father must have felt it coming for he told my mother that he was quickly taking pictures of my mother and his three daughters. He said that in case he had to leave then at least he could take one of the latest photo’s of us with him. He brought the film to a Chinese photographer, one photo for him and the others for us. And yes, not a week later the Indonesian police from Ampelgading, the nearest police station, came with a Japanese order that my father had to hand in his camera. I suppose that the Japanese were scared that the Dutch might take some pictures of what was going on.
In the meantime we had more and more snakes around the house, really so many as I had never seen before. Rasmina told Cora and me that this meant that we were moving to another place. Snakes she said, never brought any luck. Pa Min killed several of those snakes.
Even while we were swimming, we had to be very careful for some water-snakes!
The thought that we might had to leave Sumber Sewu made me feel very sad. To me this plantation was a real paradise on earth, with its pond in front of the house with the two proud banyan trees, the lovely garden my mother and Pa Min had made, the kitchen where Rasmina made so many delicious meals. The sounds early in the morning, and the sounds in the evening were also very special, I can still remember them so well.

But of course we hoped that this Japanese occupation would soon be over. My father had broken the seal of the radio, hoping that he could get some more news from outside Java.
But after a while he realized that he was risking too much for all of us, so he phoned the police from Ampelgading and told them that the seal in the radio was broken.
They sealed the radio again and my father received an “Explanation” from the Ampelgading police, dated 1 October 2602. Japan had also changed our era, from 1942 into 2602 the Japanese era.

And life went on, as a silence before a terrible storm.
My parents and I
My mother and her three daughters
Explanation from Ampelgading
My mothers, Pendafteran