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As Long as We Remember...

November 12, 2014

The Other World and Ali

Tom McLaughlin

Ternate, Indonesia – Alfred Wallace, the premier biologist, who, with Charles Darwin, published the famous paper on evolution, would have loved this. Indeed he would have. You see, Wallace entered the world of séances and explored the occult back in 1868 and onward. So did I – just recently.


We had hired a driver for a trip around the small island of Ternate which Wallace visited over 150 years ago. The atoll was a huge volcano with just a small section around the base being populated. I had wanted to view the entire region before we departed to continue our trip.


We had met our chauffeur before on a tour to the palace and to other specific places. We now hired him for a second time to visit the rest of the island.


But, first, the driver wanted us to visit a medium who was a relative of his and was famous for finding lost items. Maybe she could help with locating Ali. I enthusiastically agreed because I had never met a medium and thought it would be most amusing. I expected an ancient crone dressed on colorful native dress.


We were taken to a house and entered the living room. It was nice for this part of the world with modern furniture and bric-a-brac. The abode was immaculately clean. We were introduced to the medium’s mother, a lady in her 50's, while awaiting the foreseer to return home. I figured someone would be rolling her up the ramp in a wheel chair.


In walked a tall, very pretty, slim and slender, 27-year-old woman. She wore a t-shirt that had "Spain" written on it and pair of jeans. Her long black hair was knotted and hung down her back. The wonderful smile showed a bit of gum above her white teeth. She was beautiful.


She quickly put on a muted gold tudung (the top head covering of the Malay Islamic dress) and sat down on the end of the couch. She then put her chin to her chest and slowly came back up as a believable old, old woman. Her left hand came inward while holding her elbow outward. Her other hand was eating imaginary betel nut forming an inward cup with her hand. Her face contorted so completely into that of an ancient crone that the transformation was unbelievable to this science person.


She asked us what we wanted, Suriani told her we were trying to find Ali Wallace and she answered as an old woman in ancient Ternate Malay with her mother translating the difficult language. Because Suriani's notes are so disjointed, I have written down what she said in some kind of logical sequence:


Ali's real name is Abu Bakar bin (son of ) Ali Sharif. He earned the name Ali because he took over from a cook named Ali. Ali's father was Bugis (an islander in these parts) while the mother was from Ternate. His grandchildren are named Haji (been to Mecca) Farta, Syafa, Munira, (one male who stays in Makassar), Syamira and Asnaria. Both Syamira and Asnaria are still alive and are in Gamkanora, Jailolo in Ternate. The children of Asnaria are Juria, Zubaidah, Haji Hashim and Sekobar. Ali is buried next to his father in Jailolo, about an hour via speed boat from here.


That is all she could tell us about Ali Wallace.


Suriani asked her what generation she was from the Royal family of Sambas. and she answered it was the fifth. I asked her what my name was and she answer she could only deal with the past, but said I liked books.


Her chin than went down to her chest and, after a struggle, she emerged as a little girl. She was the Sultan of Ternate, Jelolok, grandchild. The head came up and she looked exactly like a little girl who would have being four or five years old. She told our driver to quit having an affair. She said, in her little girl voice, that she knew where the woman lived. She continued that the wife would find out and it would ruin his marriage.


After that she asked about the food and drinks around her because at that time they were unknown to her. She than morphed back into the sweet 27 year old that walked into the room. The driver said he would quit the affair.


You can believe or disbelieve what I have written. I am just telling you what happened on one morning in Ternate.


...Life is good. . . . .


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