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Climb aboard a slow boat to Gili Islands in Indonesia with our World Nomad Scott as a friendly local, Nyoman, helps him come to grips with learning Bahasa.
Our short lesson on Bahasa Indonesian won't teach you the language but contains enough of the most common travel phrases to help you get by.
Click here to download and listen to the guide. To save it, right click and choose Save Target As (13.4MB).
Click here to download the phrase book (text only).
Click here to download the phrase book (text and audio).
For those of you keen to have a written version on the podcast, here is the script below
Scott: Ahh Selamat Pagi! Where do I buy a ticket to Gili Islands
Nyoman: Selamat Pagi! Over there from the ticket officer ask for a Karcis, which is ticket.
Scott: Ok, so karcis, Cheers
Scott: Ok, I’ve got my karcis, do you know when the boat leaves?
Nyoman: When the boat is full we go.
Scott: Ah, might be awhile then – do you mind if I sit and wait with you.
Nyoman: Sure, no problem. I’m Nyoman.
Scott: I’m Scott – how do I say this in Bahasa?
Nyoman: You mean Bahasa Indonesia, Bahasa just means language. You say Nama Saya Scott
Scott: So, nama saya Scott
Scott: No thanks. Does it take long to fill the boat?
Nyoman: Sometimes, this your first time to Gili Islands?
Scott: Yes, I’ve come from Bali, I was up in Ubud for a few weeks.
Nyoman: Lombok is different to Bali, it is much slower and there are not as many tourists.
Scott: That can only be a good thing. I learnt a little bit of Bahasa Indonesia when I was there, can I practise on you while we wait and maybe get a few more words?
Scott: Well, I know that Selamat Pagi is good morning and Selamat Tinggal is goodbye.
Nyoman: Very good, did you also learn good night – selamat malam? What about hello which is salam.
Scott: Just did – Salam and Selamat malam. What else.. oh yeah – I learnt ya or tentu is yes and tidak is no I learnt these pretty quickly in Kuta with all the hawkers.
Nyoman: You pronounce them ya / tentu and tidak
Scott: Ya, tentu, tidak – check. I also know is harganya terlalu mahal – too expensive, terima kasih for thank you and tolong for please.
Nyoman: You can also say silakan for please. That’s not bad, what else do you know?
Scott: Well, that’s pretty much all of it – I was kinda hoping you could teach me some more, like ‘what’s your name’ – I didn’t ask you this earlier.
Nyoman: You say…Siapa nama anda, what else would you like to know?
Scott: Siapa nama anda. Ok, so you’ve taught me ticket – what about train, taxi and bus?
Nyoman: Over on the islands there aren’t any cars or buses – you walk everywhere or get a boat around. But if you are coming back to Lombok you may need taxi and bus these are taksi and bis – you will not really need train unless you are going to the bigger cities, this is kereta api.
Scott: So, taxi is taksi, bus is bis and train is kereta api.
Nyoman: On the islands you will probably get perahu boats which are the local fishing boats, these will take you between the islands or out to swimming spots. To get over to the Gili’s we will use a Jukung, which is a bigger boat.
Scott: It sounds like it’s a pretty chilled out sort of a place.
Nyoman: Yes, there’s not much to do but eat, swim and sleep!
Scott: I haven’t booked anywhere to stay yet, can you teach me how to say ‘Do you have a room’ and ‘may I see it’
Scott: So, masih ada kamar kosong disini? and boleh saya lihat?
Nyoman: Very good, there are mainly bungalows on the beach, but lots to choose from.
Scott: Ok, so when I find something I like how do I say ‘I like this’ and ‘how much is it’
Nyoman: For how much you say berapa harganya and I like this is saya suka ini
Scott: So, berapa harganya and saya suka ini, also ‘I don’t like this’ is saya tidak suka ini. What about some directions like where is and which way to?
Nyoman: For where is you say di mana and which way to is ke mana
Scott: So, berapa harganya and saya suka ini, also ‘I don’t like this’ is saya tidak suka ini. What about Di mana and ke mana
Nyoman: Yes, that’s good, you are picking this up quite quickly.
Scott: It doesn’t feel like it! I feel like I’m speaking too slowly to be understood – how can I ask someone to speak slowly?
Nyoman: You say silakan bicara pelan-pelan which is please speak slowly.
Scott: Silakan bicara pelan-pelan I think I may need this more than anything!
Nyoman: I’m sure you will be fine, locals will be impressed that you have taken the trouble to learn some of our language.
Scott: Thank you. Can you teach me 1-10?
Nyoman: I’m sure you will be fine, locals will be impressed that you have taken the trouble to learn some nol satu dua tiga empat lima enam tujuh delapan sembilan sepuluh
Scott: nol satu dua tiga empat lima enam tujuh delapan sembilan sepuluh
Scott: Ok, so I feel like I have enough to get by for bargaining, finding somewhere to sleep and asking a few questions. How about the time – how do I say today, tomorrow, yesterday and now?
Nyoman: Time goes pretty slowly on the Gili’s – you say hari ini, besok, kemarin and sekarang.
Scott: So, hari ini, besok, kemarin, sekarang. Looks like a few more passengers are arriving.
Nyoman: We need a few more to fill the boat yet.
Scott: Ahh good, time for me to ask a few more questions them!
Scott: Now I may not need these on the Islands but in the bigger cities I probably will, how do I say doctor and hospital?
Nyoman: These are dokter and rumah sakit.
Scott: ok, so dokter and rumah sakit. What about police and stop thief!
Nyoman: You won’t need these on the island, but you say polisi and stop pencuri.
Scott: Polisi and Stop pencuri. Nyoman, I’ve got one last phrase I need translated – in fact I probably should have had this BEFORE I got to Bali – but anyway… can you tell me how to say “Don’t shoot, those drugs aren’t mine”
Nyoman: Scott, I’m not sure what you are planning but I hope you don’t need this, “Jangan tembak, narkoba itu bukan milik saya”. Come, you can help me load the boat and practise your new words.
Scott: Sounds fair to me.