Friday, February 28, 2014

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

A Shirt For The Season


I stumbled upon this shirt dress a few months ago. It's been haunting me as it has simple cut, long sleeves and water repellent! Now I'm on the search for similar quality in the local brands. Have any info?

PS: While I do love rainy season (and don't mind about getting drenched in the rain), I wish it wouldn't cause too much trouble on the electrical train system. I had to take buses this morning due to some kind of system failure and it took me more than two hours to reach office. PT KCJ, please do something about it. Rant over and out.

Monday, February 24, 2014

The Laugh Behind The Cubicles

It's time to update you with funny conversation from my office. Here they are...

The Importance of Name Title #1
Situation: We were talking about the interview procedure for the new office boy.
NPM: I think we have the right candidate. He seems polite, hard working and  oh yeah, he also calls me "Mas".
Me: So?
NPM: So he thinks I'm young!
We: But we don't think so.
>>PS. Although Boss NPM is still in his 30s, we refuse to call him Mas and instead call him Pak. If you don't know the difference, read here.

The Importance of Name Title #2
Situation: We were having lunch and one journalist friend (let's call her E) joined us.
NPM: Bon appetite, Mbak E.
E : Yes, thank you Pak.
NPM: Wait a minute, you used to call me Mas. Why change?
Me: She made a mistake then. Now she's doing the right thing.

Somebody Stop Me...Not
Situation: We have just returned from lunch and AWA was already munching on toasts.
AWA: Would you like some toasts?
Me: No thanks, I'm full.
LEA: No thanks.
AWA: I'm full too, but I can't stop eating this.
(A few minutes later)
AWA: Somebody please stop me from eating these.
Me: Ok, give me all those toasts, right now!
AWA: Here you are (handing me one toast, while still holding the brown paper bag, which most likely contained more toasts)
Me: And the brown paper bag too.
AWA: No. I want to stop eating, but I don't want to give you all the toasts.
LEA: (laughing)
Me: -_-

What's Your Status?
Situation: During a meeting with a German (DFF) in which we updated each other on our progress
DFF: Ok, let's update on each other's progress. RS, what's your status?
RS: Well, I'm married.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Have A Productive Weekend :)

Batik Lasem is a unique batik tradition from Lasem, Central Java, known for combining Chinese motifs, such as dragons and fans, with Javanese elements. The Chinese, who settled in the area more than 200 years ago, established the textile companies, while the Javanese became artisans responsible for the design and making of Batik Lasem. Source

Yo, kind people. Have any fun plan this weekend? Here are a few events that may interest you this weekend:

-- Indonesia Fashion Week
-- Monthly Movie Screening: Bastard. Feb. 22, 2014. Erasmus Huis Jakarta. 1.30 p.m. and 4 p.m

Also, I found this Wiki page on Bahasa Indonesia and Bahasa Malaysia comparison. Interesting read, I must say.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

A Day In Malaka City


Just like all Indonesians, I learned at school about Malaka strait, its vital role as the gate for foreign merchants wanting to trade with the Malaka sultanate and how it dwindled under the monopolizing Portuguese-British-Dutch rules.

Last weekend, I got a chance to visit the city for just one day. Lesson Learned #1: if you're a history buff/foodies/architecture-urban junkie, one day in Malaka is not enough. Note to self: Malaka, I'll be back.

The visit to Malaka was a bit impromptu. The first plan was my friend Nanda and I would visit our friend Tika, who now has a very cute baby son called Arashi. But during the waiting period (we booked the ticket in July 2013 while the flight takes place in February 2014), Nanda asked if I wanted to go someplace else besides visiting Tika and her family. I said, "Yes. I want to see Malaka." She agreed to make a quick visit to Malaka before coming to Tika in Kuala Lumpur.

A lot of things have happened since then. I changed jobs while she ended her work contract but then her former office called her and offered a permanent employment status starting on Feb. 14, 2014, just a day before our departure! Luckily, she can persuade her employer to move the start of employment to Feb. 20. Yay! So off we go to KL on Feb. 15.

We had a morning flight and arrived in KL at 10.30 a.m. I met up with another friend Ririn and her family at LCCT. As I waved my hand to her, Ririn's oldest son Aditya (4 yo, if I'm not mistaken) ran to me and hugged me. Aww, so sweet. I hugged him back. But then he turned his head to Ririn and asked,"Mommy, who is this?" Hahaha! Well, this auntie should make herself remembered :).

After I handed out the package from Ririn's brother in Jakarta, we bought the LCCT- Malaka bus ticket. Since the departure time was at 1 p.m., we had lunch and then waited at the bus shelter. We took the Transnational Plusliner bus (MYR 24.30 per person).

The bus exterior
 
The bus interior

After arriving at Malaka Sentral (Malaka's bus terminal), we asked around for the direction to Taman Kota Laksamana (our hotel). A man in uniform pointed us to Bus No. 17 heading to Ujong Pasir. So we hopped on and paid the fare (MYR 1.5 per person).

 
Bus No. 17
 
A bit similar to TransJakarta

And here comes Lesson Learned #2: always check and re-check with the driver on your destination. The man in the terminal told me that we should take the bus until it made a round turn back to terminal and not far from the U-turn, we would arrive at Taman Kota Laksamana. 

When the bus did not seem to make any U-turn, I asked the bus driver to stop at Taman Kota Laksamana and guess what? He said the bus didn't go to that place. But I was told that this No. 17 bus would pass the place? No, this is not bus no. 17, the bus driver said. Argh. Nanda and I were upset, because we were tired, sleepy and hungry. Well, perhaps it's hangry not hungry.

We returned to Malaka Sentral, hopped off the bus and watched where the bus parked. It parked on the platform for Bus No. 17 to Ujong Pasir. So we rushed to the platform and confronted the driver and also the man in uniform. Nothing beat the fury of two hangry women. Hahaha, no, we asked them quite nicely.

They explained that Bus No. 17 had two routes: Route A (not going to Taman Kota Laksamana) and Route B (going to Taman Kota Laksamana). The Route B would depart at 5.40 p.m. said one of the men. I glanced at my watch: 5:10 p.m. So we decided to have a meal while waiting for the bus.

Nanda was almost on the verge of giving up the hotel. Let's just find another hotel, she said. Because I'm persistent and stubborn, I insisted that we continued the search. It's not dark yet and the bus would be here soon, so let's eat first before taking the bus, I told her.

After the meal, we hopped on Bus No. 17 again. This time, we made sure it would go to Taman Kota Laksamana. Yes, it is, the bus conductor said, but I don't know where your hotel is because I think it's a new hotel and Taman Kota Laksamana is a long road. We decided to walk along the road and asked the people once we got there. You know what? The hotel is right there where we hopped off the bus at the intersection. There is no signage outside of the hotel, but it has glass wall and we can read the hotel's name from outside. Our hotel is AL-33 Hotel Melaka.

Our hotel room

We took a bath, rested for a while and drunk a lot of water to cool down. Dude, despite the fact that Malaka and Jakarta are waterfront cities, the former is very hot compared to the latter. After 8 p.m., we decided to go see Jonker Walk at night.


 


The next day, Nanda wanted to join the Sunday mass at Christ Church Melaka. The Anglican church has English service at 8.30 a.m. While she was in the church, I walked around the area and took photos. An hour later, she joined the walk. After that, we had lunch and departed for KL.









Panorama of Malaka fort

Archeological work on Malaka fort

Last treat before we left Malaka: Ais cendol durian :)

Friday, February 14, 2014

Mt. Kelud Erupts

Helping hand: A military soldier carries a collapse resident during the evacuation in Malang, East Java province on Friday moment after Mount Kelud erupted. Hundreds of thousands of people were ordered to evacuate after the volcano, the 1,731-metre Mount Kelud, on the main island of Java erupted spectacularly, hurling red hot ash and rocks over a huge distance. AFP/ Aman Rochman, link

Mt. Kelud is located in East Java province, but my friends and families who reside in Central Java said that the volcanic dust also reached their towns. So far, I've heard five airports in East Java and Central Java are closed due to the volcanic dust rain. Railway networks to Kediri, East Java are still in operation, but the train will use lowest speed. I hope everyone is safe and sound.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Finding Love On The Road

Since my parents have never approved my travel plans, I always tell them that, hey, who knows, your single daughter may find future husband during the trip. It's a false hope, of course. For me, finding love on the road is not as easy as it sounds. I'm too shy/weird to make a good first impression on people I just meet on the road.

Anyway, a few days ago, I read a blog post on Lonely Planet about the issue. So it's not impossible, after all:). Check out the full story here.

Monday, February 10, 2014

The Show Stealer Squirrel :)

Squirrel Portrait, Banff. Melissa Brandts and her husband were exploring Lake Minnewanka in Banff National Park-Canada when they stopped for a timed picture. They had the camera set up on some rocks and were getting ready to take the picture when this curious little ground squirrel appeared, became intrigued with the sound of the focusing camera and popped right into the shot! Photo source.

P.S. Reminds me of this :)

Monday, February 3, 2014

Do You Just 'Want To Know' Or 'Truly Madly Really Want To Know'?

Most Indonesians have relatively huge curiosity (it's probably one of the Asian things), especially when it comes to other people's private issues. You may take a ride on a public transport and just strike a conversation on any topics with a random person sitting next to you. 

Topics may range from your three children to your investment plan to your cheating boyfriend. No, seriously, I have heard people talking on those topics when I was taking my morning electric train commute. And I didn't even try to eavesdrop. They just talk about it casually, as if talking about the weather.

Of course, people don't always answer the overly sensitive questions. The title of this post is one of the tricks of avoiding such questions. In Indonesia, it says: "mau tahu saja atau mau tahu banget?" A friend living in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia said that they had it translated to Malay language: "nak tahu jer atau nak tahu sangat?" Oh man, I should make a short post on the difference between Indonesian and Malaysian languages one day.

Anyway, this is why sites like www.whysokaypoh.com are vital in this part of the world. I stumbled upon this website after reading this news. Unfortunately, it only functions on smartphones and iPods, so I can't link it here. My favorite part is the Love & Relationship (or from the look of it, the lack thereof).

Now excuse me for I need to practice saying these snarky comebacks :D.

Have a lovely Monday!