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AustraliaPlus: Agustinus Wibowo–Exploring the nomadic life of a travel writer

AustraliaPlus 16 Mar 2017 Agustinus Wibowo with Sastra Wijaya Indonesian travel writer and photographer Agustinus Wibowo recently appeared at the Perth Writers Festival. He is seen as a pioneer of a new genre of Indonesian travel literature, allowing readers to experience his physical, spiritual and emotional journey through his stories. Australia Plus talked to Agustinus to find out more. What are some of the things you discussed at the Perth Writers Festival? I had two sessions there. The first session was called Nomadic Lives with renowned Australian explorer and travel writer Tim Cope. One of the interesting questions that Tim and I discussed was whether we would call ourselves modern nomads. In my opinion, there’s a big difference between nomadism and travelling for our own sake. Nomads migrate up to four times a year (following the changes of season), but they have fixed places for their spring, summer, autumn and winter pastureland. They are still confined by borders – international or traditional ones – and the purpose of their travelling is for survival. By contrast, a modern traveller has much more freedom in choosing where to go and why. The other session I had was This Place Called Home, together [...]

March 20, 2017 // 4 Comments

Perth Writers Festival: Meet Travel Author Agustinus Wibowo

Perth Writers Festival To say that Indonesian travel writer and photographer Agustinus Wibowo has a passion for adventure and linguistics is an understatement – he has spent most of his life travelling to the far reaches of the world and currently speaks 16 languages. In his latest book Zero, his travels bring him home to spend time with his dying mother, a woman who lived her entire life in one small village. Read more about this incredible author before his PWF sessions Nomadic Lives and This Place Called Home. For those who haven’t read it, what is your latest book Zero about? Zero is my story of homecoming. After ten years wandering the world, I had to go home, to face the reality of my home. My mother was on the brink of death, as cancer ravaged her body. The only thing I could do was sit next to her, reading my travel notes from faraway lands – China, Nepal, India, Pakistan, Afghanistan. Just like Scheherazade who reads through one thousand and one tales over as many nights, I wished that every story may prolong her life for one day. Along with these stories, my mother finally found a voice [...]

February 22, 2017 // 7 Comments

Adventurer Agustinus Wibowo: A journey home

By Rory Howard China.org.cn, May 8, 2015 Agustinus Wibowo is a Chinese-Indonesian author. At first glance, he seems more like a traveler than an adventurer and more like a happy conversationalist than a philosopher. But just as my first impression of him is challenged by what I learn of him in our conversation, so too do we find in his latest book, “Ground Zero: When the Journey Takes You Home,” that his sense of self has been tested by his upbringing, his culture and his travels. Danger, charity, humanity Wibowo’s first two books – “A Blanket of Dust” and “Borderlines: A Journey to Central Asia” – tell of his earlier travels through Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan. When asked what took him to these places, he answers that his journeys were governed by chance. “I wanted to be a journalist, but I didn’t have a background in journalism. The road itself is the best university,” he says. His journey began in China, the “land of his ancestors,” where he studied computer engineering for many years in Beijing before becoming disillusioned by education. He had no interest in pursuing a career in his field, so he decided he had to travel [...]

May 8, 2015 // 1 Comment