Mar 19, 2009



As I touched down at the Soekarno-Hatta Jakarta International Airport, I got shocked to see people called me to get my $$ exchanged and drivers begged me to get into their taxi. It was just as bad as in KL which made me wonder whether the culture was followed by whom. I hate being approached to ask whether I wanted a taxi. Visitors could easily get one by asking at the taxi booth without being too cautious.

I came 3 hours earlier than my mum and her PUSPANITA friends so I had no choice but to 'look busy' to avoid being disturbed by the taxi drivers. Unfortunately, I couldn't last long after 2 hours of walking around at the arrival hall.
Therefore I sat in front of the police station. True enough, a taxi driver approached me and asked for a chat. I just entertained him without giving him much hope that he'll get any customer as I told him that I'm joining the tour as well as the people who'll be coming soon. Still, he just gave me his name and number and asked for mine. I told him I couldn't and will call him when I need him.
We chatted eventually. I found out he worked in Johor previously for 4 years many years ago. He told me that Malaysia was a wonderful place to worked in and made a lot of money. But he ran out it anyway. I pondered what he did with the money he collected since most of the Indons that my dad hired managed to open up their own business with their savings. Besides knowing that he had 2 kids and a wife living at a nearby hotel, he told me that most Malaysian men and women come over to shop for clothes(obviously) to getting prostitues/gigolos for Rp300,000 for 3 hours. He asked me that I don't have to be shy if I 'want' to go to such places and he may bring me to more places of interest like pubs and discos. This fella go the wrong customer for sure. -_-
I told him I'm keen on learning the culture and lifestyle in his country. It's not surprising that he knows places to go for. He even told me that he guide Tony Wheeler from Lonely Planet to get to know the area more in Indonesia. Sounds hard to believe...
According to him, a drive by taxi to bandung, it'll cost about Rp700,000 for one way not including toll. I made my mental calculation that the tour price I paid shouldn't have cost so much for 5 days of bus ride, hotel stay and food.. I felt a surge of regret of joining the tour at that moment.
As my mum's plane arrived and some aunties didn't to fill up the necessary documents to enter the country. This caused me to wait for another 1 hour and wasted 2 smses (my mum's hp battery got kaput apparently) to get to know where they were already.
Finally, our tour bus took us to Triniti Hotel which situated within the slums. It reminded me of the movie Slumdog Millionaire movie as I observed the area around the hotel I stayed.

Going on board


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