The Ex-Pat Life in Jakarta...
January 20, 2008
I am now at the airport ready to leave Jakarta. I feel like it is a good time to do a small account of my time here…
The one thing I can’t talk about is what type of sights there are to see out here. I actually don’t even think I ever opened my
Lonely Planet to the ‘Jakarta’ page. The reason? Well, a new friend Mary Beth whom I met in Bali invited me to stay with her
while I was in this city. This gave me access to the ‘ex-pat life’. And this ain’t a bad life to have in a place like Jakarta.
I met up with Mary Beth at the Starbucks that was nearby her place. Who would have thought that along with the Starbucks
would have been The Coffee Bean, DeliFrance, Dome, Cold Stone Creamery amongst many other smaller posh cafes? Okay. So
I had a slightly different vision of Jakarta in my mind.
While we were there, Mary Beth said that her headmaster was having a big party and that she would understand if I didn’t
want to go…but that I was more than welcome. So of course I went!
Ahhh… Open bar and free-flowing wine. It didn’t hurt that it was also catered by a Vietnamese restaurant. Two glasses of wine
into the night and I was a chatty Cathy. It wasn’t until later in the night I would find out that the person I was chatting away
with for a half-hour was actually the host of the party – the headmaster of the program. I had no idea! I just assumed he was
From there, we went on to meet up with some more of Mary Beth’s friends at a bar at a swank Jakarta hotel. It was so fun
meeting all of these new people. As I said, I was living the ex-pat life.
The next morning we nursed our hangovers. At a mall. Actually, at two malls. The first was where we had breakfast; the
second was where we went to watch a (really terrible) movie. But these things required no energy so they were fine by us.
That night we met up with Laura and her husband and their friends for a ‘going away’ party at the bar at the Four Seasons. I
met Laura the night before at the hotel bar we went to and she was great. She and her husband are heading off to Dubai in a
few days hence the ‘going away’ party. We stayed for a bit – but, man, were we still tired.
The next morning we went with her friend Joseph and his friend Elyse (who is also visiting) to Sunday brunch at the Four
Seasons. Quite a nice way to end my time here, huh? It was at this brunch where I learned that Elyse has just written a book.
A non-fiction book – about only finding out she had a twin sister a few years ago. Crazy! I can’t believe finding out something
like this 35 years into my life. Sounds like something out of a book (which it is actually) – but I would have never thought I
would run across somebody with this type of story. I didn’t want to ask too many questions because I want to read the book
(called ‘Identical Strangers’).
After a nice time and some fab food, it was time for me to part ways with Mary Beth and her friends and make my way to the
airport. It was time to say ‘good-bye’ to Indonesia.
And also say ‘good-bye’ to having java in Java.