It was nearly dusk when we arrived at Paottere, Makassar's traditional port. The call for prayers were sound, and yet some men had chosen to continue working. Lit by a measly gas lamp from on of the many traditional ships, several men carried sacks of goods from a nearby truck towards their ship, piling them up on their backs and shoulders. When approached with a camera, one of them warmly smiled and asked for several photos right away, then followed by laughters and teases from the rest of the crew. As I watched one of the men dropping sacks upon sacks of goods unto his friend, the night fell, and yet the crew kept working deep into the night.
Paottere is the life of many man and women who calls the ships their home; they themselves sailors who crossed the eastern seas. Lies just beyond the walls of Paottere are floating houses indigenous to the area. The water condition of the port itself, however, was less than satisfactory - a trait found all throughout the city. Seen just off the port was a decaying piece of a ship, surrounded by shoes, plastics, wrappers and various garbage floating on the water.
A workplace, a home, a diamond in the rough hidden in the outskirts of Makassar, Paottere is a host of many faces. The heart of the port, on the other hand, lies with the hardworking people, providing transport and shipping to and from the island outside of Makassar.