Indonesians say we ourselves are friendly citizens. That we are one of the people that can welcome foreigners easily and can greet them without being hesitant. “Is it right or wrong?” one may ask. Indeed those are true and we are proud on that easy going-ness with foreigners.

But how about being friendly to our fellow Indonesians? In that case I want to order Indonesians based on their origins according to their hospitality ranked from the most friendly to less friendly:

  1. Those who live outside JABODETABEK
  2. Those who live in JABODETABEK

If I may quote Rick Jordan’s The Red Pyramid ” It takes strength and courage to admit the truth”. There are reasons why The Jabodetabeks is placed in the bottom position (P.S since there is no demonym for this, I will start calling Jabodetabek citizen –> The Jabodetabeks, the word works for plural and singular :0)

The Jabodetabeks try not to mind other’s business. While keeping quick pace to reach anywhere and getting things done, they limit their interaction with total strangers. In commuter train, I rarely chat and see people chatting with others. To divert the empty-mindedness we distract ourselves with cellphones or tablets. The Jabodetabeks are similar with people from big cities in the world. The worst part is that they sometimes ignore people doing wrongs in street such as littering or crossing over red-light street light.

They do not have good topics for chit chat other than TRAFFIC. Oh this one is so true. When I was in Jogja, a stranger successfully talked to me for such long period. As he talked his heritage and culture, I was preparing to be asked about the traffic we do not love so much. Luckily that time the bullets weren’t shot, fyuuh…

Any act of super kindness behavior is considered potential crime. T__T Well this one is the ugliest. I admit myself that I always put barrier on super kind act from strangers. Being reluctant of getting help from other is one of newest trend from the city people. We as the independent people rely on ourselves not trusting sincere motives from strangers.

The reasons I wrote those was because of my experience during waiting for IELTS’ speaking test in Jakarta, Saturday  at May 7th. There are many people in the test room. I could immediately tell that the test participants were grouped into 2 categories. There are the quite ones and friendly-conversation lover ones. I mostly talked with participants coming from outside Jabodetabek and zero from Jabodetabek. They were warm, honest, curious and easy to talk to. These people have the value the Jabodetabeks need to copy. May us have good contemplation regarding behavior on chit chat 😀

See you on the other side #TheJabodetabeks!


Satu tahun yang lalu di bulan September, saya berkesempatan untuk mengunjungi Pulau Ternate. Ternate adalah sebuah kota yang berada di Pulau yang memiliki nama yang sama. Ternate sendiri pernah menjadi ibukota provinsi Maluku Utara, namun telah berubah sejak 2010 ke Sofifi. Saya sempat diceritakan oleh tukang ojek yang mengajak saya berkeliling (nama : Darwin), bahwa Sofifi lebih mirip pedesaan, dan banyak pegawai pemerintah di Sofifi itu tinggal di Pulau Ternate, jadi untuk bekerja mereka menyebrang dengan kapal.

Sayangnya, masih banyak sekali keindahan Maluku Utara yang bias saya kunjungi seperti Halamahera, Morotai, Tidore dan lainnya, namun waktu membatasi waktu liburan saya yang hanya 2 hari di Ternate. Tapi dua hari di Ternate, bias di katakan saya menang banyak!! Indah sekali pulau ini, dan saya bias melihat diri saya tinggal di Ternate. Tidak jauh tertinggal dari kota lain, namun masih sangat tentram dan tidak terlalu ramai.


This view of Gamalama Mount and downtown from the Great Mosque of Ternate City


Masjid yang sangat besar dan megah ini, terletak di pinggir laut. Tadinya memiliki dua menara mengapung, namun 2 menara tersebut rubuh di awal 2014

Masjid yang sangat besar dan megah ini, terletak di pinggir laut. Tadinya memiliki dua menara mengapung, namun 2 menara tersebut rubuh di awal 2014.


Hal yang tidak mungkin bias kita lakukan sebagai warga Jakarta, langsung lompata ke laut untuk berenang.

Hal yang tidak mungkin bisa kita lakukan sebagai warga Jakarta, langsung lompat ke laut untuk berenang. Hal ini membuat saya jatuh hati dengan kota ini. Pinggir pantai yang bersih, dan air yang jernih sangat mengundang semua orang untuk terjun. Saat itu saya tidak bias terjun, karena khawatir dengan barang-barang saya. Beautiful!


Bagi para pengunjung yang berpikir Ternate itu sangat tertinggal, di pinggir pantai sepanjang Masjid Al Munnawar adalah pusat kota yang dipenuhi pertokoan. Ada sebuah Mall yang cukup lengkap di mana, banyak keluarga dan anak muda yang sering berkumpul, mall itu adlaah Jatiland Mall. Sepanjang jalan ini adalah daerah reklamasi pantai. Dan memiliki banyak pilihan untuk bersantai seperti taman di pinggir pantainya. Di sini ada juga taman skate untuk kawula muda Ternate. Saya tidak yakin ada taman skate board di bekasi (setelah saya gogle, ada loh satu taan skate yang tersembunyi di


SIluet di sore hari. Pulau di seberang sana adalah Pulau besar Halmahera. Foto ini saya ambil dari  taman di sebelah Masjid Al Munawwar, di Jalan M. Djabir Shah.




Indahnya sore

Sepasang sejoli sedang menikmati matahari di sore hari. Maafkan untuk kualitas gambar yang pas pasan :p Sudah menjadi hal biasa untuk warga Ternate bersantai di pinggir pantai pada sore hari, sepulang bekerja dan sekolah. Tak sedikit yang memanfaat waktu untuk berjualan di area pantai saat sore itu


Gapura besar di jalan Sutan M Djabir Shah


Hari itu, perubahan cuaca sangat dramatis. Di sianghari bisa bergantian hujan dan terik dalam beberapa jam. Saat itu memang di bulan September yang seharusnya masih cerah, namun awan tebal terkadang menyelimuti pulau ini secara misterius. Inilah beberapa misteri Pulau Ternate dan Gunung Gamalama yang sangat stunning.

Sehabis hujan, dari depan gunung gamalama. Jalanan tamapk bersih dan udara sesegar di pegunungan tanpa polusi. Masih kelihatan kan awan di puncak gamalama?


Tunggu yah post selanjutnya


So 28th Jan, I arrived at home from Balikpapan from my 14 days work. I decided to go for night drive around Bekasi city, a city inhabited by 2.3 million people, and I tried to drag my sister to join but she refused. It was 8.30 pm. I don’t know whether she has turned into a baby or everyone’s tired but not me.

So initially I want to go to a mall to find a snack but I thought of saving money for other purpose. I headed to Bekasi Station. On my way for no-destination drive I was amazed to see the development of this city with new stadium, parks and many new shopping malls. But I could not resist to comment on the behaviour of the cars drivers, motorcycles riders and pedestrians. Eventhough there was no-stop or no-parking sign along the road, they still stopped their cars or even parked it and also people crossed the street anywhere and anytime they want. Dunno whether they were heedless or just being lazy.

Then as usual the street to Bekasi Station was crowded. Traffic.. Good now I was stuck and left with half empty fuel at the car’s meter. So trying to save fuel, I turned the AC off and opened the window. Shamelessly I increased the music volume to get the approval of the passing through motorcycle riders’ that I had a good taste of music. I played The Generational’s Alix album throughtout my drive.

Thinking of myself after spent 15 minutes stuck in the street that I had to see everything in positive manner that God willing I wiould see something new. Then out of nowhere I saw 2 guys who I taught were the station officers happened to be 2 white Mormon missionaries. I was pretty sure after I googled their typical uniforms and realized that 2 guys I met outside national library in Melbourne were Mormon missionaries. Still a new experience to see this stuff in Bekasi.

After I passed Bekasi station, I learned that Kartini street and Proyek area are the best place to have many culinary options at night. Also the square or Indonesians called as Alun-alun remained full of people, young and adult from different communities. Choices of food sold at Alun Alun was lesser than the one’s at Proyek.

Not yet sleepy and still starving for city strolling I continued heading to an intersection at the map below. There was a seafood stall that was crowded for weekday time I thought. This place will be my next place for culinary trip in the city.


I figured out that Bekasi was lacking with higher education institution. I found that Cut Mutia street filled with two or three higher education istitutions the only big university was Unisma in other area. I saw many students roamed Cut Mutia area at night but not many food stalls for those students. So I continued driving, soon I had to add Kemang Pratama area and Galaxy area for those who were hungry during night. Galaxy area was more alive than Kemang Pratama at night. Only fewer shops opened at Kemang Pratama during night. I bought porridge from Bubur Ayam Jakarta for 14k rupiah.

So that was my night drive I guess. There are many areas I want to explore at night. See you.

Cerita ini adalah bagian dari trip saya bulan September 2014, sangat sayang untuk tidak di bagikan.

Alhamdulillah sudah waktunya off berarti waktunya me time. Dan hari ini adalah hari pertama dalam ekspedisi melihat Indonesia timur. Gak harus ke hutan dan naik gunung, tapi lebih eye witness terhadap apa yang disebut Bhinneka. Perjalanan ini dimulai dari kota Balikpapan, Provinsi Kalimantan Timur.

Hutan Kalimantan

Saya sendiri bekerja di sebuah perusahaan yang berjarak 2 jam dari balikpapan. Dan ritual kerja daya adalah Rumah-Soekarno/Hatta-Balikpapan Airport, Sepinggan-Mutiara Camp/Office. That’s it, jarang sekali roaming around kota ini. Palingan hanya check in di Path lalu pergi lagi. Akhirnya saya putuskan untuk berkelana di sekitar Balikpapan sebelum saya tidak lagi bekerja di field.

Buat kalian yang belum pernah ke Balikpapan, tiga hal yang menjadi highlight yaitu :
1. Bersih
2. Harga segalanya mahal
3. Tidak ada pengamen masuk2 ke angkot
Hal hal itu pokoknya gak jauh dari kehidupan penduduk Balikpapan dan pembicaraan banyak pendatang atau tamu yang berkunjung.

Perjalanan dari Mutiara menuju Balikpapan

Setelah perjalanan dari Mutiara ke Bandara Sepinggan, gak terasa akan dimulai nge-bolang day-1 ini. Dimulai dengan naik angkot dari Bandara Sepinggan untuk ngirim barang ke rumah dengan jne. Dengan arahan Mba Henny (pegawai vico dept air transport) saya naik angkot no. 7 ke arah Balikpapan Permai. Biaya angkotnya sekitar Rp. 4000 setiap trip. Lumayan mahal kak. Satu lagi hal yang akan kalian rasakan, yaitu hospitality yang tak ternilai menurut saya. Dengan aksen Sulawesi Selatan yang tebal, penumpang dan supir angkot yang saya tumpangi menunjukan jalan dan bercerita tentang jalanan di kota Balikpapan. Di angkot lain, sang pemilik adalah orang Jawa yang sangat ramah. Jadi penduduk Balikpapan itu cukup diverse. Mulai orang Jawa, Banjar, Bugis, Dayak, Tionghoa dan Toraja. Jadi wajar saja kalau di Balikpapan ini cukup aman dan jauh dari kerusuhan, karena memiliki tenggang rasa yang tinggi.

Siang ini langsung check in ke My Guest Home, lumayan dengan 250k sudah dapat penginapan yang super nyaman, shower dengan air panas serta service yang sangat ramah. Dan lokasi di pusat kota, dekat dengan tempat apapun yang kamu mau. Lalu hari itu karena saya baru menyentuh kota, saya segerakan ke biosokp :p maklum 2 minggu di tengah hutan. Urusan bioskop di Balikpapan ada blitz dan cineplex21. Kamu gak bakal kekurangan bioskop lah di sini, dan alhamdulillah harganya gak berbeda dr yang di Bekasi. Dikirain bakalan mahal banget. Yasudah saya sempatkan untuk solat di Masjid At Taqwa di Balikpapan yang lumayan bagus.

Malamnya tidak lupa saya sempatkan untuk ketemuan dengan teman kuliah saya di S1 Teknik Perminyakan, dia bekerja di TEPI (Total E&P Indonesia). Cerita tentang kerjaan kita dan banyak hal. Walaupun saya tidak begitu dekat dengan Gani saat kuliah, namun doktrin kaderisasi di jurusan sangatlah kuat. Teman seangkatanmu adalah keluargamu. Doktrin yang baik, namun kenyataannya gak semua orang mengiyakan. Kami makan di Ocean’s. Sebuah resto premium di Balikpapan, dan lokasinya bener bener di belakang hostel gw gan. Kalau kata Gani ini resto sih biasanya tempat farewell boss boss Total. Makjaang, dari tadi cuma bolak balik menu karena gak di cantumin harga di aneka seafoodnya. Berhubung saya kenyang yaudah makan yang sewajarnya aja. Indian Food T_T di restauran seafood. Sedikit ragu, namun semua hilang ketika kita cobain masakannya. Gak heran ini bisa di bilang sebagai the best restaurant in Balikpapan. Kita beres jam 10 malam, dan kesimpulan pembicaraan kita adalah harus sering-sering bersyukur. Karena sudah cukup letih, saya langsut istirahat di hostel. Ohiya kami makan berdua total 250k. Balikpapan high price issue strikes agaaiiiin. T__T

To be continued…..


Hi all, good morning. Peace be upon you all. So I want to share you about my city, Bekasi. This city is part of Metro Jakarta that includes 28 Million people. Metro Jakarta itself consists of cities and regencies from 3 different provinces, is called Jabodetabek. There are Banten Province, DKI Jakarta Province and West Java Province. Bekasi, in West Java, itself is place where 2.5 million people reside.

So while Ilisten to The Black Keys song – Stop Stop, I uploaded these pictures. Here is one of the mosque in Bekasi city. It is a new mosque opened in 2013, in this new residential area, Summarecon. The mosque itself is relatively small. This mosque was designed in a mix styles between modern design and traditional red brick exterior. This mosque was designed by Ridwan Kamil, the Mayor of Bandung city. I lived there during college time.


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Like I said the mosque is somehow modern and traditional in the same time. There is only one minaret,and calls to prayer are voiced here. So here is the interior of the mosque. I guess at Zuhr time it is kinda quite. In

A woman was preparing herself before taking ablution

A pathway to connect the ablution/toilet area to the mosque

People are taking voluntary prayer before the compulsory Zuhr prayer

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There is no Air Conditioning inside the mosque, the mosque itself make use of its open air building system to stay environmentally friendly (The air really blows quite enough not making you sweat). So after I prayed Zuhr, I try to take some pictures of the mosque’s calligraphy. This calligraphy better seen in silhouettes.

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Besides five daily preyers, there are many activities to boarden knowledge about Islam, it is open to public. Every Sunday at 07.00 am, there is a 2 hours sermon with specific theme. And also a class in Quran reciting. I hope you can enjoy my pictures. Peace upon you all.

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Khemal A

So I want to write about this eccentric cafe in Gambir Station. Occupying two levels space, this cafe also gives every customer excitement to take at least selfies. Please forgive me for not reviewing the menus, I can assure you all that is all good and halal (the food is kinda overprice I think). Located in the central Jakarta, this restaurant must caught your eyes while you are here. I personally were curious to visit this place. While in ground floor it occupies smaller space so it seems very crowded with customers. You can take their private lift to upstairs. The lift itself feels off. It lifts you slow, but you can notice how unique this restaurant by noticing the lift is decorated with plants.

Bugis Kopitiam Level 2 @ Gambir


A view to Gambir’s main hall, all travelers are roaming


One thing beside the glass wall is classical decoration. With chandeliers, antique mugs, vintage souvenirs and framed-pictures I can’t resist to take pictures. The room is full air-conditioned. And also there is outdoor space for smokers. While the uniform for men they us Peci (how to pronounce it is like saying PAY and CHEE (from cheese)). Peci is similar with Fez (cap from Morocco) and Songkok in Malaysia. Songkok is a cap widely worn by Muslims in South East Asia. Peci itself still used by Muslims in Indonesia in prayer and also used for national ceremony by the government even though they are not Muslims.

The waiter with his Peci

Smoking space and a traditional window ornament

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You can tell that the owner is both wanderer, religious and nationalist. As you can see The Quran, first Indonesia’s president photo and souvenirs from traveling abroad.

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With this interior, I can say it is one restaurant that you have to pay a visit in Gambir. While for sure I can’t tell other restaurants to be visited to please the eyes.


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Well there you go, may you enjoy my pictures. And I hope I can write consistently and better. So please visit this restaurant

Too bad, I can’t find the official website, but I found the phone number. Reservation is unnecessary I guess.


Bugis Kopitiam

Stasiun Gambir, Lobby Selatan (Medan Merdeka Timur Kav. 19-27), Jakarta

+6285885353589, +6287788650801

This is actually a very very late post, I categorize it as dibuang sayang (read: wasteful not being posted). Bengkulu, a province in the western side of Sumatra Island is a place where I grew up around 1994. One day, this place had successfully called me to go there again after 9 years. Actually it was my photo album that made me want to go to Bengkulu. At March I visited this place, not much I can remember about the streets but I can relate for sure. Sure it changed a lot.

With Indian Ocean bordering its west side, I can truly feel the beach calls everybody to go there after school or work. It is so much different from Greater Jakarta, where everybody will go to mall or home directly after long day in school or work. Here in Bengkulu, you will find not much traffic and relaxed life. After work, people rushed to the Pantai Pandjang beach. It was for sure the first place I visited.

Trying out bike ;)

My relatives Kak Yuni and Tata (from left)

The trees at Pantai Panjang

The trees at Pantai Panjang are still preserved since I was living here in 1994

My Bike

The bike I chose was pretty descent though the rest of it were in bad conditions

You will find many hotels/motels/bars in the opposite of the beach. i stayed at Horison Hotel, it was quite good. A night cost around 750k rupiah. The main attraction in Bengkulu for sure is Pantai Pandjang. Well I picked the wrong time to bike, it was 2 pm!! The sun was burning at that time. By 10k rupiah you can bike all day, though some vendors rent it for 1 hour only for the the same price.

The bicycle track is long enough, it stretches along the coast

Sea, sand and pines as long you can see

Ant view

Indian Ocean

In the late noon, I saw many people will come to the Beaches and just had sports (football, jog and bike). This is the thing I really want to happen in Jakarta. We want to enjoy our city outdoor, not from inside the malls. Well one big coconut for sure quenched my thirst.

One big green coconut ;D

After the temperature chilled, the people were coming to the beach to enjoy after school/work. Shot in B&W

Same scenery

Right trough Indian Ocean

I myself, enjoyed the beach. behind was Tata

This beach, since located in the west side of the island, has the good view of sunset. Well I must admit that I enjoyed the sunset and the sound of the wave. Well done Bengkulu for providing a stress relief for its people. I will continue for another post also from Bengkulu. Bye all.

Sunset 1

Sunset 2

Sunset 3

Sunset 4

Sunset 5