I have spent a few days pondering this blog as I was not sure and still am not entirely sure what to write but there is a need for me to write out some of things stored in my head. The blog to some could be the same as the Pensieve, which Dumbledore used in the Harry Potter stories, using it to store memories to allow the mind to fill up with new ones.
My blog has just passed its 2nd birthday and is moving into its third year and so most of the pondering I did was really to understand how to write and celebrate that fact, however as I am still writing on an almost weekly basis I saw no real reason to celebrate that much. My blog has been for me a huge and welcome distraction and it is now almost a hobby where I can bask in my time out in Indonesia, not that it is drawing to a close but things are changing for me in quite some big ways in the next year or so and that means more learning experiences and challenges. Happily not all is changing and that I can feel at peace with but I have a feeling that the coming 'blog year' will be huge.
I don't think my style has changed too much although I am partial to adding photos now to illustrate my point or help visualise my experiences and thoughts over time. I also feel that I am more settled and understanding of some things that happen in Indonesia and perhaps can even can rationalise them to help me explain and survive them.
The traffic here always worries me but I am not now surprised when all I see it a sea of traffic. The dirty rivers, the ramshackle housing, the lack of concern for safety, the happy smiles, the spirit, the sense of community is all around me but yet I am still a stranger and onlooker when it comes to actually being here. An expat is just that, someone who is not in their homeland but in someone else's homeland and trying to live a near as possible normal life.
This time last year I was planning a trip to England to see my friends, my family and it was a terribly exciting time for me and when I got home it was the best and a relief to be there, yet I still wanted to return here as, well, Jakarta is exciting. Hot. Smelly, Next to near perfect beaches and paradise islands. I felt my life was here as I still do. England was great and getting back I did feel both belonging and also being a stranger. So much had changed or moved on, redeveloped and so much had not grown or moved. Both were comforting but also slightly depressing as I missed so many things. Family weddings, Friends weddings, My parents etc.
This year I am not planning a trip to England but Christmas is nearly all sorted out, New Year is almost sorted out and my next year is again almost sorted out. The use of almost should not be underestimated as often for me, almost is good as it gets for planning things and trying make things happen out here. Almost is as good as saying yes but without the certainty.
I seem to spend a lot of time thinking and considering how to improve what it is that I write and perhaps make it have more direction or a more focus topic base but then I think what use would that be when the sole purpose of writing is a chance to record my life in Jakarta and therefore everything and every time I write it does just that. Sure, there are times when no matter how you look at what I do, living here is humdrum. Work, food, sleep, work, food, sleep etc. Visiting the same places, seeing the same things but no matter where someone lives, unless he or she is not tied to one place of work doing the same day in day out then routines must come about. I still wont really write about my work that I do as I feel it would damage or create a different set of readings for those that read them and by writing about my place of work and therefore my employer it would be against some of my beliefs. Noting down things I have done, reactions and concerns can be considered as negative and that might work against me, so that's why I don't write about work in any detail. It is however safe to say, working here and doing what I do is one of the major reasons that keeps me in Indonesia and in Jakarta.
Recently I have not really had the opportunity to visit or travel due to being very busy and working 6 days a week. I am still running around the city and visiting different places and restaurants. Taking random trips off on the bike into Tebet or other areas of the city. I possibly share some of those places more on Four Square or Twitter as they seem to be my preferred 'social networks' if I had to choose. I still view and use Facebook but not as much as I used to. I don't find it hold too interesting these days and there is nothing new with it. I do like to know what is happening to friends and family through the world but it has lost its shiny exterior now and it is become rather mundane. The recent set of changes have not really bothered me either as well it is simple enough to understand. Google + as far as I can tell is mute and so few of my friends use it, there is no point in using it either. So twittering random things and checking in everywhere keeps me amused more than most things these days.
I think I will write a blog about taxis.
Have a good day