Hello, Jakarta!

So yeah, I went to the capital city on Dec 13-15, not on holiday but to fulfill a 'secret mission' heheh..

I boarded Mandala Air, booked online, one month ahead, paid for IDR 960K for a SUB-JKT round ticket. It could have been cheaper if you didn't opt 'fly carbon free' and choose your seat. I chose window seat cos I love the view of floating clouds, which I didn't see much of cos the weather was sunny and the sky was clear.

Is it just me or anyone else think that the view is better on the right hand side window than on the left hand side window? Cos I always get to see better view when I sit by the right hand side window.. :)

Surprisingly, I met a familiar face onboard next to my seat. She was my classmate in IALF last year and we had a good chit-chat.. :) She was worried knowing that I was travelling alone and told me to use ONLY Blue Bird taxi..

Btw, why was everyone worried about me going alone to Jakarta?

I mean, it's only Jakarta. I've travelled to five other countries in my early twenties and no one was as worried as now. Though I didn't travel alone, but most of the times I wandered in cities by myself. Okay la, not really by myself, usually accompanied by one or two friends.. But this time I'm 24 y.o. already, oh please... I was going to surf someone's couch, but Mom was extremely against it and paid me a two-nights stay in a nice hotel instead. "Perhaps somewhere else, but not in Indonesia," said her.

Yes, mom... I don't mind. At all.

I arrived at Terminal 3 Soekarno-Hatta Int'l Airport, the newly-built terminal, I guess? Cos everything still looked so new and clean and well-maintained heheh... I was afraid of 'black taxis' but here I can order my taxi from an authorized booth. I picked Blue Bird and was given a receipt. This receipt was to be passed to a Blue Bird's staff on the taxi station, where I waited for it. The booth was near the exit door after the baggage claim hall btw.

This is the first trip to Jakarta after 15 years, and my impression about this city remains the same.


It's not 'crowded' in a nice way. Because Hong Kong is crowded, too, but I love it. I love waking up early to see people rushing in the morning, to see some of them has just finished their walk in the garden, some of them are grabbing their breakfast and rushing to their work, people queuing on bus stops and subways are full as well.
But Jakarta was not like that. It's crowded in the way that can make you go mad. Upon arrival, I was trapped with my taxi in a massive traffic jam......... on a HIGHWAY!! Yes baby, you read it right.. =.=  I checked Google Maps and found out the airport to my hotel was supposed to be only 30-mins-driving away. In fact, I spent about 1.5 hour!! I was lucky I wasn't the one driving at that time.. xD

I stayed at Lumire Hotel (ex Aston Atrium Hotel). It's nice and I had the whole king-sized bed shared with a hunk only for myself woot woot~~ The check-in process took like forever.. Since I arrived at 11am, I left my luggage and went straight to the dental school to meet a friend there.

Arrived back at the hotel @3pm or so.

Ady picked me up in the hotel about 1.5 hours later and since I wanted to visit Kota Tua, he suggested us to go there. But as natural as in Jakarta, we got trapped in a traffic jam!! A massive one. It's almost 5pm already. Feeling hopeless of not being able to reach the place before sunset and afraid of being trapped even further, we made a detour to Mangga Dua Square and spent few hours there until the traffic jam subsided hahaha.. After the rush hour ended, I tried to contact my friends, asking for suggestions about sightseeing places we could check out in the late afternoon, but they had no idea besides malls or eating places hahaha.. So he drove to another mall to meet his friends there. Practically, on day one we didn't go nowhere and I learned how to get used to the traffic jam lol~

Guess what place we visited on day two?
Deng deng deng........
Omg... suddenly I felt sooooo 'Orde Baru' and the image of Soeharto (our former president) flashed in my mind hahahahaa....xDD

It's actually Ady's idea!!

Previously we had these options: Kota Tua, Ragunan Zoo, and Taman Mini Indonesia Indah (TMII). I've only ever visited TMII and that's when I was about 9 y.o. On the other hand, he was very curious cos he had never been there. In the end, we agreed to visit TMII instead of the first two options. When he first mentioned TMII though, I was a little skeptical. As long as I remembered, it didn't impress a 9-years-old me at all, how could it impress me now? But I did a mini research and read some positive reviews. Moreover they had renewed their logo, and usually a company's logo renewal was associated with major changes, right? Why not give it a shot? Who knows it's actually better than 15 years before? I got curious, too.

The journey took longer than we had expected, got deceived by a tricky sign board so we took the wrong way too.. But after one hour, we made it to that place.

Wow.. IT'S BIG!

That's our impression before we actually reached the entrance gate.
The entrance gate was quite pretty with intricate design (if I didn't mis-notice heheh) so I got a little more optimistic. It could have been better than I had imagined, I thought.

The ticket was IDR 10K per person CMIIW. Cheap!

It's a big complex exhibiting various traditional houses of Indonesia tribes, surrounding a pond of miniature of Indonesia's islands. If you can't get what I mean, check this link for yourselves la cos I can not explain it better hahaha.. Have you ever visited The Window of The World (世界之窗) in Shenzhen, China? TMII's concept is similar to that, not as grand of course.. and minus the pond perhaps.. hahah.

Since we're here to take pictures, it's best to explore the garden of eden on foot, isn't it?
We asked for a map from the information center (it looked like a dead-office) so we knew where to start from. It was cloudy, drizzling, and the weather was very humid.

We made a walk and reached the first traditional house I didn't know its name.

Hi, house!

I thought we're only going to see the house's facade, imagine how boring could it be? So I was excited when I found out we could actually get inside the house! Wow, curiosity level raised even higher..

But the door was locked and no one was around.

Till I spotted a cleaning service staff and he told me that the staff was taking a lunch break and would be back after 1pm. That meant one hour later.

Crap..  =.=

We snapped some pictures of the house from outside, then moved around the neighborhood.. snapped some again, then walked to the next few houses-I-also-can-not-recall-their-names... =.=

On our way we saw a golf-car like vehicle which offered a ride for IDR 3K per person. We thought if we had reached half of the whole route and got too tired to continue walking, we could ride this vehicle.

To the second house.
To the third house.

O hai house, what's your name again?

Lucky! The door was opened and finally we got to see how the inside of the house looked like!
Well.... the excitement stayed only for few first minutes. Remember that I said the weather was very humid? It felt worse inside the house!!! I was wearing a loose short-sleeved t-shirt and still sweating like crazy...  Why didn't they install some ACs??! I was busier wiping off sweat than enjoying the house interior. The air inside was musty and the room was poor lit.... Inside, they also exhibited traditional costumes, house appliances, some pictures of local heroes, weaponries, texts explaining history etc.

I was sure my pupils were dilating to its MAXIMUM aperture, NOT because I felt excited looking at each of them, but ultimately because of the poor lighting!! Geeezzzz......

OMG I kinda feel that what I write here is ruining our tourism promotion effort lololol.. XD

To the fourth house.

Met the Seulawah, the first Indonesia's carrier airplane. I don't know it's the authentic one or just a replica, but above all, I had no idea why they placed it here amongst the traditional houses.. Should be in an aviation museum, shouldn't it?

On the way to the fifth house.....


Ohhh couldn't stand this anymore.... WE FINALLY GAVE UP!!!
I was sssooooooooo relieved when Ady suggested to go back to the car and just finish the route by driving mwahahahahhhh~~

Proven that it had not changed at all since 15 years ago yeah!!! xDDD

When we first arrived I wondered why it's so quite and desolate there, Ady replied that it was weekday so it's normal if only few people came. We did see some groups of school student at the museums, but within the traditional houses exhibition area we only noticed no more than 10 people. It was very very lonely and sad there, and now I know why!

It's just not interesting!

Visiting the first house was interesting.. but after few ones, it's just dead-boring!! No attractions at all, plain boredom!

And the song they played through the speakers, can you guess??

It's a song by BROERY MARANTIKA!!!!! *faints*

I do not dislike him though I'm not a fan as well, but out of all songs in the country, why Broery's??

Very. Nostalgic. TYVM.

I think it'd be better if they played either national or traditional songs since the whole complex is supposed to show off the various cultures this country has. And I could be happily singing along cos I still remember about  15-16 songs from various parts of Indonesia mwahahahah.....

Oh yeah, almost forget to tell you that TMII has museums, too. You can go to the website for more infos cos we didn't check 'em out... The museums had a lot more visitors (like I said earlier, school students) than the houses, so perhaps they're much more worth going..


Eh, we did check the Istana Anak (or The Castle of Indonesia Children)..... but from outside only! The buiding's exterior looked kinda interesting. If you want to get inside the castle you need to buy a ticket for IDR 5K per person.

Cheap, not???

It's too fucking cheap that I keep wondering where they earn their money from to keep the whole complex running. You know.. Houses, museums, buildings, all need maintenance.. The staffs also need salary.. And who pays for electricity, water, and phone bills?

No wonder they don't install air conditioner there.. *nods head*

Well... I don't intend my post to discourage anyone from paying a visit to it hahahahaa.... Seriously I've read some positive reviews of it. Perhaps it's just me, perhaps it's just the weather. Different variables lead to different results, right? I saw children were mostly happy and having fun ;)

Spent the rest of the day in Pondok Indah Mall (I like this mall very much) and fX, and that concluded my trip!!

Phewww.... writing a long post is tiring....

So, do I like this city, you ask?

Well... It's only three days, how could I answer that? But like it or not, if I have to move there then all I can do is coping with the situations. U know, now back in this town, I somehow drive more patiently and even not get provoked in a traffic jam as easily as before. Cos I know it is really nothing... hahaha.
Imil also posted on her blog about her mad experience while visiting this city hahaha.. I was lucky I didn't encounter her situation, thanks to Ady, the great company and driver, too!! Hahahaha... Hey buddy, I hope you've recovered from flu already!! Come to Surabaya and let's go to the mountain! :D

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