Monday, 30 May 2011

Some Lists

Some lists regarding Indonesia / Jakarta and things currently at the moment

Things annoying me

  1. Not being able to go to the movies to watch the latest blockbuster as Indonesia has banned Hollywood movies currently due to some taxation rule changes
  2. People trying to kill themselves on the roads through terrible driving and trying to involve me in their   plans
  3. Getting hit by cars as the drivers are careless
  4. People using the elevator who just continue to use their BB and seem to have lost any social skills they once might have had
  5. Ignorant people smoking in my local Giant
  6. Carrefour
  7. My cutlery as it is going rusty
  8. Trying to combat the smell of stagnant water in my bathroom
  9. The Permata ATM installed in the apartment block which is still not working after a month 
  10. My Carrefour BCA credit card finishing and being issued with a Bank Mega card instead and lack of instruction about bills etc
  11. Traffic which seems to be getting worse in quantity and behaviour
  12. Road closures in the city
  13. The amount of dust in the air, it cant be healthy
  14. The rubbish on my free cable TV
  15. The Jakarta Globe (always doom and gloom)
  16. Google analytics 
Things I am enjoying
  1. Air Asia sales - another set of cheap tickets to fly away from Jakarta for the price of one
  2. My BlackBerry torch
  3. Planning for the future
  4. Work and all that it can throw at me
  5. Days off in the week due to holidays or other
  6. The silence at the apartments generally now nearly all the building work has finished
  7. Travelling in and around the city when I get the chance
  8. Going to Kota Tua  for things
  9. Looking forward to more holidays
  10. Having my DVD player back
  11. Watch the space shuttles take off and land for the last time
  12. Any movie with Alan Rickman in on TV
  13. An ant free and mosquito free apartment
  14. Relatively fast free internet at the apartment
  15. My level of Bahasa which as gone from really really really poor to really really poor
  16. Getting more qualifications for work
  17. Friends everywhere
  18. Even more so Friends from home that are talking
  19. Google earth
  20. Sleeping through the night (this might be temporary but its good while it lasts)
  21. Sending and receiving post cards
  22. The Premiership finishing
  23. Not having AC in the apartment
  25. Post from England

An update

My medicine to get past my Tonsillitis lasted 4 days, my sore throat, cough etc lasted until at least now but overall things are almost back the normal level of health ( whatever level that is) and actually that feels pretty good.
I did take Tuesday off as I needed to finally rest up and so I did, I never felt guilty and spent the morning in Starbucks playing silly games on my netbook and relaxing and the afternoon, snoozing and eating and it did ultimately do the trick. I was back at it on Wednesday and despite trying to free my lungs through coughing I have been getting better and better.
The weather also I think has helped with rain and some cooler days and long may that continue. I cant really drink carbonated drinks yet as my throat flares after them but everything else seems normal.

So thats the end of that I hope, next medical emergency will be a trip to a dentist in the near future for a check up, its been a while.

The weekend was pretty slow paced, working Saturday a long leisurely lunch and some fantastic Blackberry milkshakes in the Hong Kong cafe/resto in Central Park followed by coffee and lots of browsing in Taman Anggrek for things I might buy shortly. Which for me makes a change to actually want to buy anything other than electronics.

Sunday was sleeping, cleaning and shopping and all done in the slowest possible way, although I am not quite sure how I slept slowly but I guess you can work that out.

Today I went on a little trip into the city to visit the lovely people and offices of immigrasi (immigration) in Kota Tua. This is an annual trip often preceeded by a trip out of the country to Singapore to get a visa.
The offices are next to the post office and lasted all of 30 minutes which was nice.

Just a quick photo, then finger prints, 5 signatures and its all done and my official paperwork will be completed in the next week and thats that. So thats good. Mind I have no idea what happened as the agent that accompanies us just ushers us around and then tells us to go once it is all over.

Good stuff.

Holiday this week as well and then the weekend so thats great. For the past 4 weeks there has been a reason or 2 to have a day off in the week and the weekend. Sadly though I am not a civil servant so I can't take the government approved holiday on Friday to make a long weekend. So those that can, enjoy. Those on holiday today (Bank holiday Monday in England), I hope no rain just a lovely warm early summer day, ripe for BBQ and lounging on beaches or patios with a few beer).

Sunday, 22 May 2011


Its been a while since I have written up anything as for the majority of the past week and a bit I have been under the weather resulting in a trip to a doctor, a bag load of pills and the diagnoses of tonsillitis which was all a bit random but there we go.

I suppose the ruinous sleeping pattern,  long days and weather has finally caught up with me and so over time I have allowed myself to be run down and  not as fit as normal. I say this despite eating more fruit and veg than ever before, cutting right down on alcohol and fanta and eating 3 meals a day none of them really unhealthy.

Surprisingly I have not really been anywhere either in the city or outside it, just been at work or home or wandering around the apartments shopping or eating.
The Waisak holiday in the week was a welcome break to the normal routine but since then its been fever, cough,   aches and pains, the flu, sore throat and headaches.

I finally saw a dr on Saturday afternoon (there is one at the apartments) who not only spoke English rather well but also told me exactly how to take the medication, when to take it and ensure I finish the course of anti-biotics and also to make sure that I keep eating and stay hydrated so that was rather useful.

The drugs make me feel sleepy and drowsy but they are working slowly. I hate feeling like this.

Oh I should note that I received an email telling me that I had broken copyright rules by having Gary Larson The Far Side cartoons included in a blog and not to remove them could see some sort of legal action or having my blog taken down, that was nice and friendly.  So I removed them, however the blog is still in the public domain and so people can still access the pictures for now, I guess that will change. 

Thursday, 12 May 2011


So, 11 days ago I was flying around Java to Jogja with air asia and enjoying the hour hop there and back and enjoying all things that Jogja has to offer, then a week full of work and lots of things which really should not be giving me stress but alas, they were. The weekend came at high speed, I guess cos I took Monday as a day off. Saturday morning was a morning at work with all the 'i's dotted and the 't's crossed and so not as active as I had hoped.

Saturday afternoon was a trip over to Menteng through the ASEAN road blocks, armed police and soldiers to have pizza and some beer. I mentioned to Yovita that I was kind of bored with my BB torch as it is well boring. It does what is needs to do and then stops as there is noting else it can or will do. Therefore as it was boring I needed to change it. I am impulsive like that.
So we headed back through the city and the streets which were weirdly quiet and into Central Park to a have a 'looksee' in some phone shops. The nokiaa N8 looked really good as did the BB torch and after a lot of deliberation and consulation and calculations I decided if I was to get a new phone then it would have to be another BB. Why? well mainly I use BB messenger to talk to so many people to move back to SMS or a linking programme that both bb person and nokia person would need.
So I ended up with a torch and a touch screen toy that does more than I know and is keeping me busy. I will be selling my bold over the weekend and so really it wont have cost me too much as I am having save for next year and maybe something closer i.e. this year. 

Sunday I went to a Javanese all you can eat food festival or in laymans terms a wedding. It was as normal a very grand affair with the bridge and groom perched on the stage while 500 people or more eat their way through enough food to feed a small city for a week or 2. I lasted about an hour or so before I had to leave. I never ate, it was too early on Sunday afternoon.  The wedding however was good and very tasteful and lots of traditional dress and hats worn by all that mattered. I even had trousers and a shirt on to look more suited to being there. 

Yesterday I went yet again to Singapore for work and it was another long day trip. I took the 6.30 flight out from JK with Lion Air and the 21.20 flight back from Singapore. I must admint I am not a fan of the place now as I have been to nearly all the attractions, spent too much money there, sweated too much, walked to far and felt far too exhausted again to be there. 
Starbucks and Malls for most of the day. Muddy Muyrphys opposite Macdonalds at Forum Mall offered real bacon sandwiches and strongbow cider, something to yearn for when in Jakarta and to indulge in when in Singapore. English chocolate also is a favourite of mine and always a temptation worth having. 
Happily I won't be returning there now for a long time and so maybe I can look at going somewhere else and somewhere in Indonesia which is something I would prefer.

All I need now is a good nights sleep to catch up and all is right with the world.s

Sunday, 8 May 2011

10,000 visitors

Its taken a while but I have finally hit a milestone. Today saw the 10,000th visitor to the site which is recored by statcounter. com.
It has taken 16 months but I am personally delighted that so many people, frequent visitors and passers by have been to the site.
This is where the person from Dudley, UK landed and was looking at  and the picture they downloaded from the site.

How apt? 

Well thank you all for supporting my site and my ramblings and I look forward to posting another blog celebrating 20,000 visitors

Friday, 6 May 2011

Trip to Jogja

Last weekend I took a flight to Jogja and to explore around for a couple of days and also to meet and catch up with some of Yovitas family. 
 Before the trip I had been working rather hard at work and the break could not really have come at a better time as I have not had a proper break since January. Yes I know I have been to Singapore and KL in the past 23 months but that was due to work and also just day trips. This was a trip into Java and also a chance to relax and rest.
The flights had been booked in January or early feb and again I was travelling with Air Asia as it is always the cheapest and simplest option. Being Air Asia, the flights were delayed but this was sort of good as it meant an extra hour in Jogja and an extra hour in Jakarta so it made for less hurry etc.
We left from Central Park in the most horrendous storms and rain and got to the airport where there was blue skies although that did change. The flight was simple enough as was checkin and flying for 45 minutes is easy and so simple its almost nice.
Jogja international airport or Adisujipto Airport is a typical small airport and usefully enough they have a taxi desk where you just say the place you want to go and then for a fixed fee you go there. Most regional airports I have visited seem to do this. 
We were staying just off Maliboro Street in a hotel called Sakanti City Hotel. A review of the hotel can be found here.

The hotel was very nice and clean close to the shopping and mall historical sights. We checked in and then went up Maliboro pushing through the sellers and buyers watching for pickpockets. We started to look for food and so wandered off through the small side streets but could not find any so we carried on until the old post office and then walked back down. We stopped eventually at Maliboro mall for food and drink and for more shopping before eventually getting back to the hotel. We then decided to visit some family and so took a taxi out into the countryside some where near the slopes or Merapi.

The evening was fun as we were fed and watered and where we were, was a fish farm with pools of cat fish and goldfish and a fishing competition. So we stayed and chatted until the early morning and then got a lift back. 
The next day we took a becak to the Sultans Palace and had a wander around it. The best thing was that it was Mayday and so the police had closed the roads off for the May day marches and so travelling through Maliboro was delightful.


We went to the Sultans palace and had a wander round. It was not expensive and you had to pay for using a camera. The place was loaded with school kids and tours and so it was rather too busy. It was nice but nothing special, most of buildings looked like railway buildings although the big areas where music would be played were impressive. From there we went to the second palace or Purawisata which was far nicer and emptier and had lots of water features and also a very well kept Kampung around it. 

  Merapi is behind the cloud honest
After that we took a becak back to the hotel, got changed and then were picked up by family and went back to the fish farm for the afternoon. More food and fun. We took a walk through the rice fields and it was simply lovely. No noise, fresh air, cool breeze and although we could not see Merapi and I wish we could it felt close.
 We watched the storm clouds turn up and the lightning strike before setting off again for the city. 
By the time we got back to Jogja the rain was falling at a very impressive rate and so feeling hungry we managed to get a becak to take us out for food and paid him well for his trouble as we did on the way back.
We were flying back Monday afternoon so that left enough time for more shopping for oleh oleh (souvenirs and food) and so we did. Food, batik and crap stuff a plenty, we checked out of the hotel and got a taxi to the hotel.
The fixed price taxi from the airport was 50,000 and the taxi on meter back was 42,000 so thats not too bad. The airport tax was 35,000 each and as normal with Air Asia, no one asked why we had so many bags to carry on the plane and yes the flight was 20 minutes late but half empty which was nice. 
A nice few days out of the big smoke and a little more relaxed and with some good news and some personal fears disappearing next week all looks a little rosier again :)

I have had more than enough trouble getting this blog published and I apologise again for the layout and the disarray of the photos. All my photos of the trip if you are interested can be found here