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"Rumah Bolon"

The traditional house of the Toba Batak people is named the "Rumah Bolon", and is a rectangular-shaped building which is sometimes occupied by 5 up to 6 families. Entrance to the "Rumah Bolon" is by climbing up a flight of odd-numbered steps placed in the center of the house. Anyone wishing to enter the house must bend his/her head so as not to knock it on the overhead crossbeam. This is to signify that a guest must respect the host/house owner. The floor of the traditional house of the Toba Batak of North Sumatra sometimes reaches a height of 1.75 meters above the ground and the area below is used to keep domestic animals such as pigs, fowl, etc. Long ago, the door to the house had 2 types of doors, horizontal and vertical, but nowadays the horizontal doors are no longer used. The space inside the traditional house is an open space without any rooms. Although more than one family live inside the house, it does not mean that there are no divisions of space as their strong rules of tradition strictly govern how the spaces in the house are allocated.

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