Friday, November 13, 2009

Blonde on a ojek bike in Jakarta

I had my first experience on a motor bike in Jakarta yesterday…….I think motor bikes are dangerous at the best of times, but here they are positively lethal!

I needed to be at a friend’s house at 7.30am in the morning, but the car needed to take the kids and GJ to school, so it was a taxi or a lift on a bike.

Taxis in peak hour are hard to get and then you have to deal with the traffic. In a car it would have taken up to forty minutes, on the bike it was about 8 minutes although the distance is around 2 km.

Traffic in Jakarta is not like traffic in western countries, it is incomprehensible how bad it is until you have experienced it.

It was change of shift time for our home security guards and I asked one of them to give me a lift; my security guard and I are now very well acquainted lol.

I was so nervous I went for full body contact with my arms tightly wrapped around his middle; luckily, my handbag was the right size to wedge between us on the seat if you know what I mean!

There was no spare helmet and the kids push bike helmets were too small so I went bare… blonde hair a shiny beacon to all.

Jalan Ampera was almost at a standstill with traffic so there were plenty of people to witness my inaugural ojek (motor bike taxi) ride. GJ wanted to know if I took photos, I had to admit that it took all of my attention to breathe and occasionally open my eyes!

I saw quite a few stunned and gobsmacked faces as I whizzed by and could even hear some of the comments lol.

But I would have to say that the scariest part of my day was yet to come….

After my ojek ride I met up with my friend where we had to cross JL Ampera to grab a taxi to JL Mangpang and then we had to walk across JL Mangpang Perapatan to meet up with our other friend!

A whopping great big road with bus lanes and homicidal manic bike, car, and bus drivers.

Luckily my buxom blonde bule body is quiet noticeable and it is obvious that if I were hit I would create a lot of damage not to mention a huge mess so I given a wide berth.

By 7.25 am I had zigzagged through traffic on the back of a motor bike, crossed one big road and one whopping big, main road on foot.

I nearly needed a stiff drink and a lie down.

Luckily I was off on a day trip to the factory outlet stores of Bandung and was revived with some retail therapy.

I can, without hesitation say that this will be my one and only ojek ride.

Friday, November 06, 2009

Mahkota Lamps and Antiques, Jakarta Indonesia

It has taken me nearly 3 years to get around to it, but I have finally made time to visit this lamp shop. I drive past at least once a fortnight and have always wanted to go in and shop till I drop browse.

The lamps start out a shinny yellow brass and gradually age to a wonderful dark colour and I want one of each lol! Small lamps start at about 200 000RP (US $21) and go up to 2.5+ million RP for the giant ones (US $ 260+), bear in mind that this is the ‘blonde’ price- it’ll will vary with the colour of your hair i.e. the lighter the hair the higher the price lol

I saved these images a couple of months ago when they were featured on one of my favourite design sites, as they suit a Queensland, Australia tropical home. These photos show what can be done with a well chosen lamp, or two or three……

Ben Stiller’s home for sale,
Photos by Everett Fenton Gidley,

There are no marked prices and the price fluctuates every 2-3 minutes so be prepared to bargain. The shop assistant speaks good English, much better than my Indonesian.

The address is JL Pangeran Antasari # 64 (close to the JL Cipete Raya intersection) Cipete, ph 021 7590 2663

  These photos were all shot on my mobile phone, the colours were much more vivid in real life.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Halloween in Jakarta, 2009

A Punk, A Pirate and a Witch!

The school had a Halloween themed day on Friday 30th, GJ's birthday.

The kids had their FIRST experience of Trick or Treating!. A few of the large Expat clubs and compounds host  organised events; we went to the Kemang Club Villas for their event on Friday night. The kids had a party at the club house with a magician before the main event of Trick and Treating! Ben was shocked that you go to the participating houses and "they just give you candy!!!!" lol.

We have a great stash of candy now that the kids and GJ are working their way through!