What an unexpectedly awesome night
I randomly had an awesome night this evening. And now, I can’t figure out how to turn my AC on again and so I feel like I’m experiencing the DC heatwave in my bedroom, but it’s more of a humidwave. Should make for an interesting evening.
I spent most of the day hanging out at the Outback with my computer again, although the things I was doing on it today were much more exciting (No I wasn’t watching porn). I had finally gotten the go ahead to go to Bali for the weekend! So as a result, I was attempting to book my flight there and back on Air Asia, which is basically the Ryan Air of Asia and is a super cheap discount airline.
Sidenote: typing while falling asleep is rather difficult, and I keep misspelling words and having to retype them as if I’m drunk. I guess what they say about driving tired being worse than drivin drunk is true.
Anyhow, after an hour of frustration at Air Asia not accepting my card for some reason, I skeptically decided to just give them a call fully expecting a hellish phone wait time with awful background music jingles. To my surprise, I was connected to a rep right away who was very helpful. He got all my flight info, and for some reason my card also came up as declined with them (which doesn’t make sense as I bought a book with it ten minutes after the phone call) but they still managed to reserve my flight, so I’m going to Bali on this Thursday!
I told my main boss who is based in Singapore that I would appreciate a move to a real hotel or something like that and he said he would take care of it. I felt bad asking, and even worse that I had to go around my boss in Jakarta to do so. As a result, had what felt like a bit of an awkward conversation with my Indonesian manager, but as bad as I was feeling earlier, this non-fuctioning (I probably just don’t know how to work it but no one speaks English so I can’t ask for help) air conditioner is making me think I probably made the right choice haha.
After a rather uneventful evening, I began talking to a really nice guy named Adhi, who is one of the servers. He told me that him and the very friendly bartender, named Wayhlu were going to play pool after work and asked me if I would like to join. Eager to meet some locals, and break my monotonous days, I jumped at the opportunity, and it turned out to be a GREAT decision!
Earlier that morning, on my commute I had been marveling at the way in which the thousands of scooters flooding jakarta’s streets managed to weave in and out of traffic without killing themselves and maintaining relative order compared to India. In the short span of 10 hours, I went from observer to participant as I hopped on the back of wayhlu’s motorcycle, and we were off onto the fast, crazy roads on Jakarta! It was fitting that the gentleman giving me a lift was named Wayhlu, as that happens to be the name of the road I’m staying on (Hopefully for not too much longer) and also recently learned that Wayhlu is a spiritual term referring ti the light of wisdom or something along those lines. I had never really ridden a motorcycle before, and I can say for certainty I have never experienced driving or riding around on roads like those before. What a rush! There were cars coming at you from what seemed like every direction, and I would be lying to you if I said I wasn’t anxious. I had a helmet they let me borrow, that was far too big, and had a broken strap so ended with me looking extremely goofy as I had an oversized helmet that kept falling off my head everytime we accelerated haha. Was quite an unforgettable ride, and quickly learned the importance of goggles while riding a bike as the dusty roads kept irritating my eyes making it hard to see, but I squinted on as I didn’t want to miss a second of it.
In the recent past, i’ve maintained a very negative approach to motorcycles as death traps following some unfortunate incidents involving friends and many stories I’ve heard. With that said, I had never actually ridden on one. Although I do still find them to be rather unsafe and unprotected vehicles, I definitely do see the appeal to them and the rush you get from riding through traffic is pretty sweet.
After what must have been a 20-30 minute ride, we arrived at the pool house. It was much bigger than I had expected, and felt like a giant carpeted warehouse filled with pool tables, in a good way Probably had 32 tables total, with about 4 rows of 8 tables each. We paid the equivalent of 2 USD for an hour on the table (amazing) and started playing. I’m a bit rusty after not playing regularly in a while, but still had a blast and want to continue playing when I get back home.
I really enjoyed talking to Adhi for a while, and turns out he is a law student studying while working currently. He’s a great guy, and during our conversations it really hit me that we are really from quite different worlds and lead separate realities. Although for the most part I have always appreciated what i’ve had, I have never thought of myself as a rich man. Actually, at this point I find myself to be dead broke in American (And my bank accounts) terms. With that said, to these two I was a super rich man, and it definitely was just another reminder of how blessed I am.
Was pleased to hear that the mosquitos here generally don’t carry Malaria in Jakarta, and they are more likely to be found in the forests. The past couple night’s I’ve been channeling my inner Krazi treasure (One of our awesome roommates from Sevilla, Kari Treasure, had a crazy phobia thing of mosquitos. She got bit one night and went a bit crazy, and literally bought a mosquito net, 35 euros worth of bug repellent/mosquito killer, and even had her mom send her this absolutely hilarious mosquite headmask she slept in on the nights she hadn’t mummified herself to prevent from getting bitten… Love ya Kari!) and have been going on mosquito killing sprees. I’ve actually become rather good at it, and have eliminated most of them, although these little fuckers keep popping up all over the place!
Anyhow, after playing pool, we hopped back on the bikes to go grab some Nori Gaseng, which is one of the main traditional dishes in Indonesia. In America, we call it fried rice. I put my sunglasses on at night (pun intended) so I could see, and was far more comfortable my second time on the bike and really enjoyed the ride; almost as much as I enjoyed the spicy meal! It was so great talking to Adhi and Wayhlu at the restaurant more, as It quickly reinforced my belief that we are ALL THE SAME! Even though we grew up literally halfway around the world, in different soio-economic statuses, our generation has all of the same interests, ideas, and loves to have a good time.
After our midnight snack, I hopped back on the bike, this time with Adhi and headed back to my room. Found out that he was planning on proposing to his girlfriends family, to see if they accept their marriage plans which would be super exciting!
All in all, a fantastic night and so glad I got to spend some time with the locals as I was worried it may not happen. Indonesia had been growing stale, and I’m so glad this experience popped up on me just at the right time.
Bali is right around the corner, and after talking incessantly about it with everyone I can, I am soo pumped to get there! Sounds sort of like a wonderland of amazingness, so we’ll see how it goes.
Also, if you ever read this Happy Birthday Sonam, hope you had an awesome day!
Only 15 more days til I’m back home in the US…whattt?! Can’t put into words how excited I am to get back home and see everyone, but still really looking forward to the three incredible trips I have left coming up.
How do these damn posts keep getting so long? Sorry there’s no pictures to go along, didn’t have an adaptor yesterday to charge the camera. Speaking of which, I have an absurd number of power converters, so if you’re ever going abroad and need to borrow one, just let me know haha.
My beard was getting a bit out of control so I finally decided that I had to shave. The only problem was that my bathroom, and room in general doesn’t have any mirrors. This made for a rather interesting shaving experience, but It felt like I had done a pretty solid job sans mirror.
I just got to work and turns out I was wrong. Got an awkward patch of hair just chillin on the left side of my face…sweeet haha
Peace Love and Respect homies!