20 September, 2012

Celebrating Jakarta

been working in Jakarta, the capital city of Indonesia for 3 years, and still counting.., had dragged me to a love-hate relationship with the city. despite all its bad condition, there are still many things i love about Jakarta. our hope is high dear new governor.

quick count updated


old-school barbershop

i should ask my friend what "pioh tauco" is

mooncake festival is coming!

i want them, they look yummy :)

ayo beresin Jakarta

jelly shoes!

angry birds t-shirt ftw!
bye kumis              

08 September, 2012

Hi from Hà Nội

love this city so much! it was cloudy and rainy most of the time when i visit Ha Noi, but however.. it is a nice old city with many lakes in it :)

Hoan Kiem Lake

Lilies in the morning

01 September, 2012

an escape

secret escape! well, if it was an escape, then it is a secret right?

just guess where it was :)
good music, and sunshine.. just perfect!

this should give you a clear clue!

the little boats

everyone busy hunting photographs!

can you spot a go pro?
all photos taken by me by GoPro Hero 2. yeay!

i love Saigon!

Tell me what comes up in your mind while you hear Vietnam? Developing country somewhere in Asia? The War? Or an exotic country whose great iced coffee?

Well those are the truth about Vietnam. Laid in the south east Asia, struggled many years because of war until 1975, and now they’re rising with the hope of their 90 millions of popullation.

Last year finally me and my friends booked tickets to Saigon, or now known as Ho Chi Minh City. My first impression of Vietnam is like blast to the past. The airport is quite modern in design, with not many people in it – compared to Soekarno Hatta Airport in Jakarta. Everything seems like in slow motion. Not when you got outside the airport. Cars and motorbikes everywhere, they move unpredictably like buzzing bees. 

Saigon, an old city with beautiful old europe-architecture-buildings blended very well with locals tradition. People in Vietnam likes to hang out by the street, drinking their famous iced-milk-coffee, lemon tea, or cold beer. Accompanied by.. If it’s not snack, then it’s hot Pho. Pho is a bowl of simple goodness. Rice vermicelli drown in a soup and sliced medium raw beef, sprinkled with chopped celery.

Been to Saigon, and spent several days alone, strolling down the street in district 1 and had a little shopping is quite an experience. Though I don’t speak Tieng Viet. All transaction can be made by the help of the super invention called calculator. I just simply pointed to things I wanna buy, then the shopkeeper will show you how much you should pay through calculator. Body speaks louder, just like when you travel to a place where you don’t speak the language. If you are a photographer, or someone who really into architecture, Saigon can be very attractive. The building, the people, the history. 

Again, living in a bubble is so fun. Ah well, been in so many business trip, and most are spent alone had made me enjoy my time alone. More. Traveling alone help me to find myself again, who I really am, how I react to people, how I managed each problems, how do I make sharp decision in tight timing. Don’t you think so?

When in Saigon I stayed in District 1 area. The district whose much attraction to tourist. The old district, where you can find hotel easily. If you fancy to stay in backpacker area, Pham Ngu Lao is the place. Youth hostels and street bar are everywhere, beer is as cheap as 1 USD per jug, iced coffee and smoothies bar just a blink away! Totally heaven for your appetite! And if you are a girl, who intend to travel alone. I think it’s a safe place, just don’t smile too much to strangers to avoid scam. Let travel book or google be your guide. If you use smartphone, you can buy cheap Vietnamese SIM card and register for its 3G connection, so you can open google maps everywhere. I used Vinaphone there, 50.000 VND for a starter pack includes 30.000 VND credits. 

My Indonesian friends often asked me, how’s the shopping spree there in Saigon. Well, here you won’t find huge shopping malls like in Jakarta or Singapore. But you can find some fine boutiques around Dong Koi street, and in Balenciaga Rex Hotel complex in Nguyn Huệ street. I spotted Marc Jacobs, Loubutin, Burberry, and so on, also Dr Martens. Don’t ask me about the price compared to Indonesian or Singapore price. I totally have no idea. 

If you are not keen on those branded stuffs, you just simply go to Cho Benh Thanh, the most famous market in Saigon selling wide range products such as: daily goods, fresh meats, veggies, fruits, flowers, souvenirs, clothes, coffee and tea leaves. Fake ray-bans too. For Saigon natives, this market doesn’t really reflects their market. Benh Thanh is a touristique market, with price a bit rised than the others. But, you just cant miss this market. If you’re patient enough to bargain, you can get good deal for souvenirs. Or just sit down drinking your cold beer, watching people goes by. Ah I’ve been writing too much. Next is just enjoy these Saigon pics guys..

Ben Thanh Market

Business Library, as written above :p

Ho Chi Minh City Museum. it was closed already when i passed it :(

Ho Chi Minh City Parliament Building

sunset above Saigon, taken from Saigon Skydeck
Saigon's pedestrian. motorcycle parking or where people hangout, or sleeping!

all photos were taken by me, using GoPro Hero 2, during my leisure trip May, and July 2012, during my business trip.

21 May, 2012

you could be happy..

You could be happy and I won't know
But you weren't happy the day I watched you go
And all the things that I wished I had not said
Are played in loops 'till it's madness in my head

Is it too late to remind you how we were
But not our last days of silence, screaming, blur
Most of what I remember makes me sure
I should have stopped you from walking out the door

You could be happy, I hope you are
You made me happier than I'd been by far
Somehow everything I own smells of you
And for the tiniest moment it's all not true

Do the things that you always wanted to
Without me there to hold you back, don't think, just do
More than anything I want to see you, girl
Take a glorious bite out of the whole world

suddenly appear in my shuffled ipod.

09 May, 2012

the power of mind

yes, it's kinda strange.

because i made it. back to China, back to Shanghai, and visit Hangzhou. 

 so hang on on your mind. 
it does have power.

03 May, 2012


why don't we just dream away?
we're not real anyway...............
Why can't we just dream away?
We're not real, anyway 


17 April, 2012

紫禁城 - The Forbidden City

Tiananmen Square

Tiananmen Square
Tiananmen Gate, the entrance gate of the Forbidden City from the Tiananmen Square in Beijing

Around China for ... ^^

Around China for less than a million rupiahs

“How come? It’s impossible!” yes it is impossible, unless you have your company sent you to China for a business trip, just like what happened to me last week (april 4th – 11th 2012) hahaha, envy me come on.. It was my 1st visit to China, and was a combo coz I went to Beijing, Fuzhou, Guang Zhou, and Shanghai! Yes Shanghai! My dream one! China is mezmerising, I never thought they are this BIG. I knew they’re growing fast, but I never imagined like this BIG. My first impression was in their capital: Beijing, a megapolitant city, beautiful cityscapes built from exotic skycrappers. Very modern and edgy. 

That night was 9 degrees when I arrived in Beijing, quite torturing for a tropical-beach girl like me. I was willing to buy boots, but seconds by seconds, I think I could handle the cold weather only with my ballerine shoes.  Taruli, my work mate in China, picked me up at the airport, what a convenient for me. I was full, thanks to the dinner served during my HK-Beijing flight. It was just the beginning that I was full, the rest days in my China trip were a hunger games.. I feel hungry most of the time! I blame the cold weather, and the delicious food they have. I almost ate anything, except shark fin. Halal or not halal :D

Smile and hospitality are so rare here. I think China never care about the word “service” in its life. It took me half an hour to ask shop-assistant in Beijing to buy a cell sim card, then another 30 minutes to top-up the credit, then next day another 45 minutes in China Mobile outlet to turn on the GPRS, then 20 minutes in Guangzhou’s China Mobile Outlet to re-check my GPRS connection. Pathetic.

If you visit a small restaurant, the waiter will look like they want to dare you for a fight. But don’t worry, that’s the way they are. Speak loud and sometimes spitting everywhere actually are the things I try so hard to “accept” when I was in China. They way they look at me is humiliating. I feel like an alien.. but it’s just the way they are, I don’t really care. 

It felt good to be illiterate. I really enjoy while I don’t understand what people are actually talking about, what a calm life! Hahaha, especially when you’re already get bored with works. Translation is amazing. 

Everything’s made in China. You know industry grow bigger and bigger here. People starts getting more money, and so they can afford lifestyle. Chinese people are consumptive. Creditcards swiped everywhere. You can find international brands easily, and so high-quality local brand. Real ones, or fake ones – oh yes I am talking about fashion. Some looks very chic, some are still typical Chinese – curled hair and tattoed eyebrows. I thought I only saw these typical in Indonesia. 

Beijing – Shanghai – Guangzhou is kinda similar, megapolitant, 1st tier city. Everyone’s really busy, and sometimes they don’t care each other. Apart from those 3 megacities, Fuzhou is kinda different. I feel it’s more like Semarang – Central Java capital city. Kinda “old”, slow, and I still see teenagers greets the elderly, and smile to each other.  But still, this 2nd tier city can not be compared to Jakarta. It’s beautiful, clean, big roads, and have metro. Damn.  Indonesia, why are you sleeping?

Some people asked me, why did I travel to China, leisure or business? Yes it was a business trip, a whole week for a qualitative market research. You know why I enjoy my work? Coz it enable me to travel and see people. Listen to what they believe and value. Though in fact I could manage my time to visit Forbidden City, Tianmen Square, and Lama temple in Beijing. Also The Bund, Tianzifang, Yuyuan Garden, and Xintian Di in Shanghai.  I even met my fellow Indonesian traveler, Harry Kawanda, during his around-the-world-adventure in Shanghai.. amazing!

Trip in China is kinda hard if you don’t speak and literate their language. Most of the sign are written in Pinyin letter, and least people speak english. Thanks to Taruli, my work mate, who accompany me each day of my China trip, he does speak mandarin very well. I also install Chinese Phrasebook in my android phone, in case, just in case I am forced to talk to them. In the airports, often the officer talk to me in mandarin, put my face into a blank one. Also hotel front officer gave me a prank-call speaking in mandarin, in a long sentences, and I just answer “I don’t understand”. Sometimes I got smiley face, or a slight anger reaction from them.. hihihi..
Overall, it was a great time I spent in China. I should go back one day to visit Hangzhou – which mentioned by Marcopolo as the most splendid city, or to the Great Wall.. ;)

19 March, 2012

Underwater Hockey!

Speaking of underwater hockey, the sports I’ve been doing regularly these past 6 months, will always contains of joy and excitement. Basically I do love watersports, especially swimming. My late dad was a swimming athlete, he trained me since I was a kid, though I always refused to join a swimming club, but I really enjoy being in the water.  Later on, swimming was the only sport I do, appart from basic basketball or bicycling –these two sports had been abandoned since I went to college. I moved to Jakarta for work, one day I went to an island trip and meet Nino. Nino is the guy who’s responsible because he dragged me into freediving and this weird sport: underwater hockey. 

this is how you would look like
So what is underwater hockey? Don’t worry, I am used to explain it very often, in Indonesia hockey itself is not a popular sport, moreover underwater hockey. Underwater hockey is literally hockey played underwater. We use puck (the ball) and stick to moves the puck, just like land or ice hockey, and we play underwater, or let’s say at the bottom of the pool. 

The player will have to wear swimsuit, gloves to protect the playing hand, polo cap to protect the ears, mask, snorkel to help them breathe, and fins to help swimming faster. Simple? Yes it is. Then after you are ready with your gear, time to hit the pool. The game is played by 2 teams (usually black versus white), black team will wear black polo cap and black stick, likewise the white team. Each team consist of up to 10 players, 6 player and up to 4 substitutes. The six player will divided as forward (left – center – right) and backward (left – center – right). The objective of this game is just like land hockey, dribble the puck into a goal. It’s easy!

*wait actually it is not that easy! Because we have to hold our breath underwater! The game is in the bottom of the pool, you have to go down! No scuba and oxygen tank like divers do, because those apparatus will complicated your life, well I mean you wont be able to move agily with those stuff, so forget it. 

Holding breath, but also swimming fast, you wonder where the fun is? I love it when I duck dive until I touch the bottom of the pool.. when I rush into the puck..blocking an attack, passing to my team mates, going up for a little oxygen, then go down again.. and little bubbles burst in front of your mask... Adrenaline is calling J. Ok I know, it seems not that easy, but it’s also no that hard. Even me, a lazy girl who don’t do much sport can do this. The excitement is …ME GUSTA! Also, women are still rarities creature in our club. Only 5-10 active member now, we still approaching our dream to have Indonesian 1st female underwater hockey team. 

So you might questioning again, if we have no women team, then whom I play underwater hockey with? Again it’s easy question, I play with the rest of the member, who are….MALE! yay, another me gusta? No! they are stronger and faster.. it took me like forever competing with them until I can finally posses a puck. I’m still passing frustrating practice days, low days, when I thought I will not make it through the game. But, remember, it is a teamwork sports. Your contribution is worth, no matter how small it is, no matter is someone recognize it or not.

At the 1st time, I remember, I felt soooo lazy to go down, I didn’t want to get hit by my opponent because I know I was less fast, less powerful than them. My team mate said to me “Don’t be lazy, don’t be useless, just go down and head off opponent. You will simply block their way, and they will lose momentum, your team mates will back you up to chase the puck”. Then I did, and I saw the other can approach the opponent easier, because I made our opponent slower down their speed. I really did nothing, I just head them off. Really. But I knew I contribute, and my team mates back me up, oh really touching wasn’t it? *.*

Off course I don’t want to be a statue in the bottom. I (try to) work hard, sometimes take extra practice in the weekend to gain better performance and skill.. watching coaching videos, I am still fighting until now (conditions apply, LOL), but I know I slightly get better, but still not good enough *hahahaha poor you little girl! I am not ambitious to be a professional athletes, no. I just do it for fun, but I wanna play it the right way. 
If you are in Jakarta, and curious about it, simply come to Krida Loka (Senayan) Swimming Pool every Monday and Thursday evening. We start practicing at 7 pm. Jakarta Underwater Hockey is a fun club, fun people, err no, they are family, they are so nice with newbies so don’t worry J you can ask for twice-free-trial before you really decide to join the club or not. Got more question? Post to me, or do the social media magic in Facebook or Twitter.. see you at the bottom of the pool!