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Borneo Day 2: Saturday, July 22, 2017

House on the hill

The house on the hill. Construction workers were cutting off the top of this hill to make room for more houses and tried to blow up this house. Each time they tried, something went wrong or the workers got sick. They decided the house was haunted and just left it while digging all the other dirt away. Now it’s become a tourist destination.

On our way to the diamond mines we stopped at a recent local landmark of sorts: the haunted house on the hill.

Near Banjarbaru a new subdivision of houses is being built, and they are leveling out a hillside to make more. As they cut into the hill, they had to tear down some existing shacks and buildings. Once such house was set to be destroyed by dynamite but the dynamite never went off. The construction workers, being somewhat superstitious, felt this meant the house was haunted and the ghosts didn’t want the house blown up. Another story is that every time a construction worker tried to tear it down, the worker got sick.

Hmmm

Hmmm . . . something’s not right here . . .

So they left the house there, sitting on the hill, and dug the hill out from around it. It now sits on a pillar of dirt and rocks about 20 feet high and just wide enough for the house. It is a bizarre sight that Nazar thought we would enjoy. It has become a popular new attraction and is being called Rumah Jomblo, or the Single House.

We drove in through the new houses and parked at the foot of the hill at the base of the pillar upon which the house sits. We walked around and climbed up to the top level and took photos. Craig created and posted a Google 360 image of the house, which I haven’t been able to find or I would provide the link. Craig took some photos of me in front of the house as well.

This is a very temporary attraction, as the pillar of soil will erode away after a few rainy seasons and the house will inevitably fall, ghosts or no ghosts. They canna’ change the laws o’ physics.

At house on hill

At the haunted house that sits on a pillar of dirt near Banjarbaru.

From a geology standpoint, I was interested in the muddy orange soil that seems ubiquitous throughout this part of Kalimantan. It has a lot of iron-rich clay with rounded gravel, a delta deposit if I ever saw one. These deposits were laid down when sea levels were higher during the Cretaceous Period, and are now the hills around Banjarbaru. From our view on the hill we could see the new provincial administration building a few miles away as well as the Meratus Mountains.

We were close to the diamond mines, our next stop.

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