Picture (Im)Perfect Moment

 

Critical Incident - Picture (Im)Perfect Moment

 

Location: Bali, Indonesia

Student: Female, 20

 

I was sitting in a palace courtyard talking to my friend, a local young prince. I had to leave soon to return to my village. I apologized for my manners and for the inconvenience of my stay, as it was customary to do. I then asked the prince if I could have a picture taken of the two of us. He agreed and called a servant over to take the photo. A king from another village who had also been visiting walked over and I asked him to join us for a group picture. I moved over to my left to make room for him. Everyone became very tense and the servant refused to take the picture. The servant glanced nervously at the king and then at the far corner of the palace on my right, facing Mt. Agung. He said he was sorry, but it was not proper to take the picture. 

Why not?  What did I do wrong?

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