Tuesday, July 31, 2012

The sights of Jakarta

It's been an interesting few days to say the least. On Friday I was at work minding my own business and we were hit with a few major computer problems relating to our new system (which had not been released and was approximately a month behind schedule). 48 hours later I am in Jakarta to go through things with our developers. It was certainly far from ideal but there was not any other real alternative. To further complicate the issue I have to be in Melbourne on Thursday to interview six staff for our Melbourne office so it is going to be a tiring week.

I'm staying at the Shangri-La in Jakarta, which seems ok although we are halfway through Ramadan so I am not sure it is the usual Jakarta. the food has been much better than I expected although in the main I've been having Chinese food (congee for breakfast with chicken feet!). As I type, I'm sitting in the lounge area with a tonic water (I no longer drink since I took the five precepts!) and a mozzarella and tomato salad.

On the day I arrived I was told I could either try the buffet or a steak bar/club, both within the hotel. I chose the former and it was again, better an expected. Once I had finished I decided to head over to Bats (the steak bar) and see what it was like in case I wanted to go the following night...and what a shock I got! As I walked in I noticed that there were a handful of expats there and about 30-40 Indonesian girls, probably aged between 18-23. Very quickly I was called over and I suspect it wasn't to give me a menu! I suspect it was more to do with me giving money in return for a little late night company...needless to say I left pretty quickly and returned to my room. It seems as though they arrive like clockwork each night looking for wealthy westerners or a husband (not a sweeping statement, I did my research on Google when I got bak to my room!).

So what else has been happening in my life? Not too much if I am honest. I took on some study recently (Buddhism) and did very well in my exam; 99%. It was a weird feeling when I got my score, a mixture of both happiness and complete disappointment that I got one wrong. Anyway, the good thing is that it gave me the impetus to look in to a more serious course and I have just started online study with Kathmandu University. It's only a short 5 week course but it will give me an idea if I want to purse something longer term. For the record, the course is call Buddhist Ethics.

Finally, the other big news is that my sister is having a baby boy, which I seem to recall is due around Christmas Day. She is naturally very excited about the prospect and I know it is something that she has been looking forward to for a very long time. I guess I need to follow suit as well but before that, I need to find a relationship that I don't screw up!

Anyway, I may post a few photos from my phone of some of the sights of Jakarta although I have posted quite a few on my instagram account (simoncook1969).

Keep safe.