So we had booked a flight from Singapore to Jakarta. A nice budget one called Adam air. We payed about 40 pounds so thats great. We set off for the airport around 7 ish. Our flight was due to take off at 10 30 am so we had plenty of time. Quit a posh airport too. The flight was to take about 1 hour. Mark is not a great flier so to pass the time i can take the piss. On the Flight we got chatting to a lady fro Jakarta. Mark asked her if we need to get a taxi from the airport to our guest house and she was like no need, my work has a car coming to pick me up so i will take you there. Result. She was a really nice lady telling us about the history, the good sights to visit here. She then asked if we wanted lunch with her, so we went. We was going to pick up the bill to say thanks for her troubles and before we new it she had paid for it all. Next she takes us to the street we want and negotiates a price for a room. We was very great full to her for all her troubles and offered her some money but she wouldn't except nothing. A good start to life in Indonesia.
Jakarta the capital is on a island called Java. Indonesia has a staggering population of 225.3 million. Java hosts over half. Indonesia went to war with the dutch to get there independence on the 17th of August 1945, just after world war 2. There leader was Soekarno. He passed away a couple of weeks ago. So the Dutch were unwillingly going to surrender and was supported by the British, who had entered Indonesia to accept the Japanese surrender. Resistance was stiff and after four bitter years Indonesia had there country back and the red and white flag was hoisted over Jakarta on the 27th of December. "Good on you boys!!"
There are 129 active volcano's , 1923 square miles, they incorporate 10% of the worlds forestry and has 11508 uninhabitable islands. (Where would i be with out my Lonely Planet book to give you useless facts).
So after checking in to our Guest House which resembled prison with the same furnishing and upholstery as it has had since the day it was constructed we explored the city, well some of it which was walking distance. From what we saw this place is filthy and riddled with poverty. You would have slums all over the city, next to sky scrappers, people living at the train station, hookers, drug dealers. But one thing which i can assure you of is that you never feel threatened. All these people are so friendly and what to chat to you all the time. You walk past group[s and they will all all give you a huge smile and say hello. We don't get any of this back home. You walk straight past people back home, looking at the floor all because we are scared to break our own bubble of entrapment. After seeing enough we headed back to our street and got harassed by local school kids wanting to interview. They was there with there tape recorders and camera's recording and snapping away. They started off with simple questions and then one smart arse asked me what do i think about global warning and what needs to be done to help improve it. "Well i didn't see that coming".
So after some exploratory and interviews we decided to head out and get some dinned. We met up with our Aussie mates went to hard rock cafe for dinner. It's nice to eat at big restaurants once in a while as I'm getting a bit fed up of chicken and rice. So i ordered a bbq chicken and chips there. No word of a lie but my chicken came with it's head still on. I picked a bit of meat off but felt guilty so i left it. Poor thing probably had a name once upon a time. Disgusted.
So after some chips we paid the bill and left. It's to expensive to spend the whole night in big franchises so we left to find a bar back on our street. We found a place playing live music so decided to stay put. About six local old men invited us to join there table and have drinks so we did. Had a good laugh with them, buying jugs of beer and chatting about our lives and dreams. They even bought us chips. Considering this country is poverty stricken there all very generous and down to earth people, real people who just want your friendship and not your money. After a good night in that bar we moved on to another with some local girl joining us. Quite a swanky venue considering where we was. I think it's a bit of a low key place and only a few people get excepted in here. As we was going in there we got introduced to the owners and then she took me over to another guy to meet. After meeting him she said that this pretty much runs this whole area. Basically your business is his business and if you stay on the right side of him he'll look after you, if you don't your soon going to end up in a wooden box.
So after a great night and a little walk around again we decided it was time to leave this city and head to a place called Yogyakarta. We could of stayed longer but there just isn't enough to do so we booked an over night train leaving at 8 40 tonight. After a few goodbye's it was soon time to leave.
Jakarta is an experience and i'm sure there's more there than what we saw, we just need to get moving.