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Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Where's Noe?

Can you find Noe in the mountain of laundry?


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Monday, July 25, 2005


My dad, Bapak Ahmad, is on TV! He gave talks on Bird Flu in the morning show of TV7.


But beside that, today’s a sad day indeed. Today we have to return to Singapore. We have to leave all the good and dear friends and family behind :<. We’re hoping to go back to Indonesia in November, for Lebaran.

Since we flew on weekdays, the plane was really empty. And I mean, empty!


So at least we had a better service compared to when we flew into Jakarta. Although the food still sucked. Noe is enjoying himself because he is occupying two seats now!


Look at my sad face .. leaving Jakarta on a jet plane..


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Sunday, July 24, 2005


The next day, Om Ungan took us for a walk around the neighbourhood. Look at this photo, Om Ungan together with Noe. With his white moustache, Om Ungan has all the image of a grandfather from old storybooks.


We went to visit Om Ungan’s friend who made her own marmalade jam – orange and strawberry, all from natural ingredients, no additives or preservatives. It’s only 22.500 per jar (SGD 4.00)! So, go buy from RUMAH IBU HOME MADE FOOD PRODUCTS, phone number +62 (22) 253-1045. They also made all natural salad dressing.


After the morning walk, Indi and I went to Gallery Soenaryo, a contemporary art museum up in the hill near the villa. This is our photo in the stone garden.


I had my morning coffee in the Gallery Café. I ordered, ginger coffee latte, which was quite a unique recipe since it uses real natural ginger in the coffee and not ginger syrup. And the stirrer was made from ginger slices. This is Noe on the tree near Gallery Café.


It’s time to bid farewell to Om Ungan’s family. Thank you for your hospitality! And surely, we would recommend Om Ungan’s villa to stay should any of you readers come to Bandung.


We then drove all the way to Cimahi to have lunch with Oetomo family. We drove through Cimindi Terminal, which was totally jammed and packed! The angkots who were queuing along the road caused the massive jam. But why are they lining up there? Because there are premans (thugs) who demand money from the angkot driver each time the angkot passes this area. Those thugs are not really doing anything to help the angkots, they are just claiming that the area are owned by them! Surely, angkots who refuse to pay will face grave consequences! And law enforcement forces are not doing anything about it! Look at the scared face of the angkot driver!


In the Oetomo house, we had great lunch: Lemper Rice Cake, Catfish pecel, Pepes, and many more varieties of food!

After the lunch, we drove back to Jakarta through the Cipularang tollroad (a bumpy and rough ride indeed, the quality of the road is really inferior compared to Jagorawi tollroad).


And yes, nowadays Indonesians are becoming less and less considerate drivers. Indi is quite stressed out while driving in Jakarta and Bandung. It is like, NO RULES! See below, people are using road shoulder to take over the traffic. It is VERY VERY DANGEROUS!


Not only small cars drove along the road shoulder. BIG TRUCKS TOO!


And even more dangerous, BIG BUSES FULL WITH PASSENGERS TOO! Cari Mati, huh???


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Saturday, July 23, 2005


We had a great night sleep because the air is so cool and clean. Night temperature is like, 15 degrees, so we needed to sleep with a think blanket. Luckily we brought Noe’s think clothes, so he slept comfortable through the night.

This is Bandung downtown as seen from Om Ungan’s villa. This photo was taken in the morning, so the smog hasn’t accumulated yet.


Anggi’s family arrived in the morning and we all had breakfast together. Again, Neo is such a loving big brother! And look how different their skin colors are: Neo is as white as milk, and Noe is as brown as robust coffee bean.


Indi, me, and Noe drove downtown to Aru Studio to meet with Mocca and the musicians there. When we got there, we saw Rudy and his group practicing for the night’s jazz performance in Preanger Hotel. This is Rudi with his Czech made double bass. Not only he plucked out the strings, he also uses bow.


Rudy is also a member of a jazz band “Empat Peniti” (the sound of it is similar to “Pat Metheny”) which means “Four Pin Needles”. He plucked the name “Empat Peniti” right from the air, just like that. There’s no particular background or concept to that name. However, only later he found out, that “Empat Peniti” is also a brand of a rami thread roll made in Bandung.


This is Agung and Riko from Mocca Band right in front of Aru Studio.


Ibu Wies intercepted our route when we were in Aru Studio to take Noe away from us (temporarily, of course), because she does not want Noe to be too tired by joining us in the drive around town.

From Aru, we drove to Buah Batu (without Noe) to meet with Mas Reza family. The kids were in school holiday, and they flew all the way from Vienna to spend their vacation in Bandung in their grandma’s house. This is Kaka, Freiza, and Rania. See how much they have grown since the last time we saw them in Vienna!


This is Mbak Icha and the kids. Mbak Icha is seven month pregnant with a baby girl. Four kids in a family, that’s a lot! Congrats!


Later that night, Ibu Tuti organized a small dinner gathering inviting family members and friends who reside in Bandung. We catered mutton satay and other mutton delicacies (such as Mutton Fried Rice and Mutton Tongseng) from Maranggi. Ibu Tuti also made a delicious salad, to balance out the unhealthy effect of mutton menus.

This is Mbak Andin (Rani’s sister) who hasn’t met Noe since he’s born. We snap the photo at the right moment, apparently!


This is the four Djojosugito girls: Rani, Andin, Iik, and Ibu Wies. Mbak Andin was carrying her youngest son: Ronan. Can’t you believe Ronan was just under three years old, yet he is far bigger than Neo who is almost five years old!


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Friday, July 22, 2005


We’re off to Bandung, through the all new Cipularang Toll Road. We’re a bit lost initially, because the road sign that leads towards Cikampek was not clear. Finally after half an hour of detour we manage to get back on track. We only spend one and a half hours from Jakarta tollgate to Bandung tollgate, before being stuck in traffic jam along Jalan Pasteur. The tollroad was not really smooth; it wasn’t really comfortable to drive on. But indeed it is faster than train.

We went to Ayam Mak Uneh in Jalan Setiabudi for lunch. Although this branch of restaurant is not as good as the one in Jalan Pajajaran, we manage to quench our thirst of Sundanese Food. We had fried chicken, deep fried fish, fried beef spleen, fried beef tripe, Fried Parkia Speciosa (a.k.a. stink bean / petai), and a bowl of Archidendron Pauciflorum Soup (a.k.a semur jengkol). Plus raw vegetable dish (lalapan) with fresh shrimp paste chili sauce (sambel terasi). Too bad we didn’t take any pictures because we were so hungry!

We went straight to Om Ungan’s house up in the Dago Pakar hills. The air was dry and cool, really comfortable. From the balcony we got a view of Bandung with the SMOG covering it. Eha, Tante Ani’s maid, serves us with tea and coffee. Tante Ani proudly shows us her collection of parrots.


Indi was really tired after driving from Jakarta to Bandung. So instead of going back to Bandung downtown we decided to just take a rest in the Pakar house.

Let us present to you, The Attack of Great Big Noe!

Bapak insulted Noe by sticking his tongue out. This made Noe very angry! Noe fought back!


First, Noe clinched both of his leg to trap Bapak’s neck!


Then, Noe pull Bapak’s nose out hard!


Then, Noe stuck his fingers inside Bapak’s nose and pull Bapak’s nose hair!


Then, Noe punched Bapak’s left eye until it became blue! Revenge is done!


At early evening, Tante and Angga came to the villa bringing food for the dinner gathering later. They brought mutton satay from Maranggi, and a whole lot from Menjangan Sariwangi food stall: fried chicken, fried tempe, fried tofu, fried petai, and my favorite chicken butt satay (each satay consists of four pieces of fried chicken butt).

Later in the evening, the whole Unpar gang arrived at the villa. You can see the pictures here in Iqbal's Yahoo Photos.

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Thursday, July 21, 2005


We drove around again to meet people. So many places to visit in our list, but so little time!

On the way to Salto office, we saw this Mikrolet. Take a look at what’s written on the backside window:


It’s written there “The Me Is Three”.. I wondered what it meant. After much thinking, Indi and I concluded that the phrase actually meant “Demi Istri” – “For The Sake of My Wife”.. you know Indonesians are usually good with catch phrases..

We went to Salto office to pick up Dian, and also to show Noe to the Salto crews. This is Lenot with Noe.


Mbak Shanty and Ayu Utami were in Jiffest committee meeting when we arrived in Salto office, and both of them were so excited to see Noe. This is Ayu with Noe.


From Salto Office, we went to Tante Kiki’s house where we had a great Soto lunch! This is Tante Kiki with Noe.


We met Pak Lasman there who gave us an acupressure massage. The massage was painful for Rani, and it’s a sign that she was not really healthy. Pak Lasman diagnosed Rani with inadequate water intake and exercise.

Too bad we didn’t meet Dewi and Desyaf since both of them were working at that time.

Later in the evening, we went to Elok’s wedding reception in the Dharmawangsa. To our surprise, we met with Marina Tusin there! It turned out that Tante Paula is Elok’s Grandma’s cousin. Hence, Elok’s mom is Mbak Rina’s distant cousin. Mbak Rina is Rani’s cousin. Therefore, Elok is my very distant niece! What an amazing discovery to see that I am related to a person whom I know for quite a long time.

We met with the whole bunch of Arsitektur Unpar. They were all so amazed to see how Noe was fast asleep during the party. This is the whole gang: Punto (soon to be married!), Stella, Bang Bry, Harry, Rani, Pasha, Pasha’s girl, Soany, Dudut, and Kandi.


This is the three Arians in Arsitektur Unpar, in sequential order: Kandi, Rani, and Stella.


Kiki, who’s Elok’s high school friend, rushed to the party from her night job at Aksara Kemang. We managed to catch her up. This is Rani, Kiki, and Kandi.


Another bunch of Unpar group: Rani, Punto, Yudha (who came late and missed his formal suit), Arum, and Shanty.


Before we went home, we met with Elok’s sisters in law. They changed their traditional Norwegian outfit into something cooler. It’s too hot to wear Norwegian outfit in the tropics!


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Wednesday, July 20, 2005


Today we’re gonna drive around meeting Rani’s high school friends.

This is Noe with Yitno, the helper in Bintaro house (he made great fried onion!).


That morning, we went to Plaza Senayan to meet Vena in Spice Garden. This was the only timeslot available to meet her. We were really looking forward to see Valdean as well, but since Valdean was sick, he didn’t come with Vena to meet us. We had Teh Botol, Tahu Gejrot, and Serabi Solo. This is Vena with Noe.


After meeting Vena, we went to ATM to get some cash, and let’s see what I saw on the ATM door:


It’s funny (yet understandable... crime rate is pretty high in Jakarta!) that you’re not allowed to wear hat, sunglasses, or helmet in ATM.

From Plaza Senayan, we wanted to make a surprise visit to our dear friend Natalia Elok Mjosund who was going to have her wedding reception the next day. The whole family was really excited to meet Noe! We were greeted with a Norwegian style breakfast (yes, breakfast at 2pm, since the norwegian family was still jetlagged) and of course, Norwegian layer cone-cake - leftover from last night’s family dinner, was also there. What a nostalgic moment for us who were part of a Norwegian family wedding. And Tante Mirna was really excited seeing Noe! It seems that she really couldn’t wait for a grandchild :>


Later in the evening, we went to Kapulaga, an Indonesian restaurant in Jalan Senopati for a small reunion with Smandel group and Soegijoko family (those two groups are not related, but what the heck, we don’t have much time to meet up with everybody and it would also be good to introduce one group to the other). This is Noe with Mbak Ratna.


This is the Smandel Group: Pandu, Reza, Thia, Abi, Dara, and me in the background.


This is Noe with Mas Wicak.


Pandu carried Noe while Reza was watching … so cute!


Abi, our experienced mother of one daughter, held Noe in her arms. She disapproved Noe being her daughter’s boyfriend because Noe is younger!


When we got home, Noe is doing some ab-exercise with Eyang Kakung.


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Tuesday, July 19, 2005


We spent the day visiting Rani’s relatives. We went to see Bu Yati in Tebet (plus Ardi and Ari too), then we went to Om Ade’s house to meet with him and Tante Rini and Tante As. Too bad we forgot to bring camera, so no photo available for the day. That day was the first time Rani tried melon-flavoured Fanta, which tasted really good.

We closed the day by going to Megaria to see “Gie”. A bunch of people came with us to see the movie: Pak Ahmad, Pak Hindro, Bu Tuti, Mbak Fanny, Mas Ari, and two of their friends. Siska and Anggi couldn’t make it because Neo was sick.

Let me reserve the space to write down my commentary on Gie.

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Monday, July 18, 2005


After a tiring weekend, we only spent the day hanging around at home and went to Mal Ambassador to see Bimo’s Katzoo restaurant and also to buy DVDs.Jakarta was hotter than we thought, so we let Noe be naked when the weather gets too hot.


Noe learned many new skills while in Jakarta.


This is Noe with his two lifeguards. An inter-generational picture: Father, Son, and Grandfather!


This is Noe with Eyang Kakung in Mal Ambasador


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Sunday, July 17, 2005


The next morning in Jakarta, Eyang Tuti took the opportunity to bathe Noe. It was a routine that she missed ever since she left Singapore a few weeks before.


One day in Jakarta, and Noe had his first severe mosquito bite (actually, mosquitos don’t bite, they puncture). Indeed, Jakarta mosquitos are ferocious.


The whole Soemardjan family, Oetomo family, and Eyang Putri drove to Parung to see the fish farm that Anggi and Om Anto took care of. This is Noe with Oma Rudy in the fish farm.. look at the cute shoes that Noe wore.


Noe loves Neo and Neo loves Noe (what confusing names!)


This gooey stuff is actually a colony of worms, used to feed the baby catfish. Ewwwwwwwwww


From the fish farm, we drove to Cibubur to see Anggi’s future home, which is a land parcel in a real estate development. The whole trip took us two and a half hours because of traffic jam. No wonder, Noe and Eyang Tuti fell asleep in the car...


In Cibubur, Neo play around together with Noe in the land parcel. Neo was a good big brother to Noe!


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Saturday, July 16, 2005


We went to Jakarta! We’re so excited! In Changi I discovered a male toilet with baby changing table. It’s step forward towards gender equality in child-rearing. I wish all male public toilets in Singapore would have baby changing table.


It was Noe’s first flight in this world. We flew on Qatar Airways (the cheapest flight available).


Noe got his own seat, since the special fare is cheaper than having to pay infant fare without seat.


Noe is such a well-behaved baby, except for a few minutes prior to take off he cried unconsolably.


We couldn’t do anything because the plane was in the taxiway, so I tried to console him by breastfeeding him.


After the seat belt sign turned off, we went to change his diaper and it turned out that his passed motion! Noe, sorry we couldn’t change your diaper immediately because the plane was taking off. He’s fine and content after his diaper was changed. Noe was a jewel in the plane, the stewardess and other passenger adored him and wanted to play with him. He spent the rest of the flying time sleeping on his own chair.


When we landed in Cengkareng Airport, we were so fascinated with many things that we saw. For example this immigration detention room, which also serves as praying room. I have never seen any detention room before.


Right after we finished the immigration procedure, we saw a big cheerful neon sign near the baggage claim “Welcome to Indonesia ............. Death Penalty for Drug Trafficker”. It was so ironic, a cheerful welcome and a death penalty both in the same big neon sign, doesn’t seem to be very welcoming, does it?

This is where indonesian female foreign workers get redirected towards Foreign Worker Air Terminal, where they will be met with corrupt immigration officials who will squeeze out their money, or else the workers would not be allowed to leave the terminal.


We were really sad about it. Those foreign workers really struggle to feed their family, they are raped and abused while abroad, and this is how Indonesia welcomes them???

We also saw this funny sign at the baggage claim.

“To avoid taking the wrong bag, make sure collect your own bag”

It’s like saying “to avoid getting killed, make sure you don’t get yourself killed”. What the heck? The signage was not really helpful at all...

Anyway, straight from the airport we went to Noe Welcome Party in Rempoa. Thanks to Ibu Tuti everybody gathered there, from Eyang Putri to little Neo and little Kenken. Plus, the food for the party was superb, we could find Siomai, Guotie, Chocolate pudding, Satay, etc!

This is Noe with his Eyang Uyut (Great Grandma).


This is Noe with Eyang Happy.


Mas Dodo was on fire that night. He kept singing (as you can see below) and playing piano...


This is Noe with his distant cousin Kenken. Even at a tender age of four month, Noe has been sleeping together with a girl!!! Naughty!


Noe with Om Anggi’s fish face.


Noe with Tante Siska.


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Thursday, July 14, 2005

Yawning Bread on Malay

Please come read the latest entry from Yawning Bread for more info on the origin of Malay (as a culture and ethnicity). What he wrote truly made me feel empowered; powerful enough to make we want to bring this issue once again for further discussion.

Your comments are welcome.

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