Thursday, March 29, 2012

Is Indonesia racist?

Indonesia is without any doubts one of the most racist countries I have ever visited. But it is racist in a different way. Not like what we know in Europe, America or in any other country of the western world. I don’t know how to call it so i will call it positive racism (but in my opinion any kind of racism is wrong).

White people are glorified here from the first moment they step out of the airport. It is very funny to watch Indonesians how horny they are when they see white face. Most of the people here treat white people as celebrities. Except Bali, there they are used to tourists, but also there we had some weird situations because of our white faces.

We went to one shopping mall when we were in Jakarta, and few days before they had some terrorist bombings in catholic churches, so policemen were all over the city, in the hotels, in public buildings and also in front of shopping malls. And they had these metal detectors through which you have to go to get inside, like in the airport. And we, a group of white asses, are going inside through the detector and every-fucking-one of us did beep. We were expecting some troubles but the policeman just smiles at us and waves at us. If I was a terrorist, this would be that lucky moment I am hoping for my whole life hehe.

They treat us the same here in Padang Panjang where we live. Everybody thinks that we are something better because we are white. Just yesterday one guy told us that we are so much smarter that people in Indonesia just because we are white, just because we are from the west. When we go to the market to buy some food everybody is looking at us with open mouth. They whole world literally stops in the moment when they see a white person. This happens all the time and we live here already for half a year. I can not even count how many people took pictures with us when we were walking on the street somewhere. This whole thing gave me one life lesson. I don’t ever want to be famous!

Maybe it sounds like fun but it isn’t heh. Everybody knows what we do all the time. Everybody is watching us all the time when we go somewhere. Everybody knows where we live. And most important thing is that they all think that we have shitloads of money, because we have to, we are white and from Europe so we have to be rich. But we are not. We have to explain all the time that we are poor students who live from the scholarship, which we are getting every month. In the beginning, when we didn’t know the prices for food in market, they always overpriced it for us. For example instead of 5 000 rupiah for 1kg of tomatoes they asked for 10 000, and for Indonesia that’s a big difference. Now we know the prices for almost everything but they still try sometimes.

Always an entourage.


Another set of photos

Here are another interesting photos from our trip. Later this day I will post some "cool story bro" stuff so make sure you come back here later. Thanks dudes

Jakarta by day

This is typical Indonesian bathroom

Bus station in our "city" Padang Panjang

Yes we live under active volcano

Wednesday, March 28, 2012


It literally took me 107 minutes to upload these 4 pictures

from the top:
1. Jakarta by night (view from the hotel room)
2. Typical Padang architecture near school campus Padang Panjang
3. Relax at the Padang beach with fresh coconut and cheap smokes
4. Damaged Padang building after earthquake several years ago

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Lets shoot some west Sumatran asses!

So we went to Sawahlunto this weekend for a local paintball tournament. We applied a month ago and were very very excited about it. Mostly because it was something to do and the frustration from local people here was growing fast. So we bought some clothes and prepared ourselves for the tournament.

The problem was that we reaaally underestimated the whole thing. The winning team would get $1000 and that’s pretty nice money for us, foreigners. Imagine what it is for locals when they earn $120 a month. So yeah we went there, our team average age 22, full of enthusiasm and happy we could get out of PingPong for a while.

There were 11 teams including us. 3 teams were policeman, 1 team were hunters, 1 team were professional shooters from Sawahlunto and 3 teams were people working in the paintball park. I have never played paintball before and these people were either working with guns or working in the freaking place where the tournament was held.
Long story short, we won one game and lost two games not winning $1000. But apart of that it was a very fun weekend and it was worth going.

This is just a little entry from the weekend. More from Indonesian adventures coming.

keep posted J

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

How Europeans feel in Padang Panjang

First feelings from this place were really weird. In the first days, we thought that they really put us in some kind of Auschwitz or working camp, because no sign about our passports and we were filling in some weird forms all the time. Funny was that those forms were only in indonesian and we only knew how to say hello and thank you. But at least someone always helped us. For me, the funniest process was a field trip to the police headquarters for this area to give them our fingerprints and they also gave us more forms to fill in. We had to describe how our head looks like, what type of eyes do we have, what type of chin, ears and so was very racist I tell you :D While we were waiting for something “really” important, i was walking around the police station and I found a very interesting wall. It looked like their trophies wall. And between those trophies were pictures on the looked like a story so i looked closely and i found out it is a photo documentation of a murdered body and the whole investigation and also when they captured the murderer. I suppose that it happened somewhere here in this city and they are very proud that they were successful with the investigation of the only one murder in the history of Padang Panjang.
We spent few days just walking around the town and after these few days we were slowly getting used to the fact that everything is new for us because it is completely different than in Europe. But there was one thing, and to this day it is (we are 6 months in this hell already), which is very hard to get used to, and that thing i show all the people here stare at us. Literally they stare with open mouths. They don’t look at us, they fucking stare like I have an elephant on my forehead. I am very surprised that no one did crash on his motorbike while staring at us and thinking if he was dreaming or really saw a group of white people. To the sentences like “hello mister” or how are you mister” we were allergic after first few days. That’s all they know and everybody tries to impress you with these sentences and they shout it even from distance. Fuck it, being famous is not easy. On the other hand, people here are very grateful and all the time when we come somewhere or sit in a warung somewhere, they are very happy that we are sitting in their warung. Then they talk about it for days with their friends.
Since we wanted to see more of the beautiful nature around us we went on a little trip. When we went to Padang Panjang from the airport in Padang for the first time, we saw a nice waterfall. So we decided that it’s not that far away so we went to check it out. The waterfall has around 30m and it is right next to the road from Padang to Padang Panjang. So everybody stops there to take a photo. The entrance fee was 2000 rupiah and that is really nothing even in here hehe. So we payed and went a little bit closer. The water under the waterfall looked really dirty because of the trash everywhere on the ground but some locals were in the water not giving a fuck. We didn’t wanna risk some new type of disease so we were just standing on the rocks around the water. We took some pictures and then we saw some monkeys in the trees. I fucking love monkeys!!! They were the first monkey we saw in Indonesia so we were really excited. But they were not excited as we were and they were just jumping from a tree to tree on the top of the waterfall. So we decided to go after them inside the rainforest. Great idea, since we had maybe one hour before the sun went down, right? Fuck it, we wanted to see monkeys! There was an old railroad going the same way from Padang to Padang Panjang but I think it’s not used anymore. So we decided to follow this railroad until we will find a good point to enter the rainforest. Believe it or not we found one. It was a very small trail and it was even getting smaller and smaller but we continued deeper into the rainforest. But after about half an hour of walking we didn’t find any sign of monkeys so we turned around and decided it is better not to be in the rainforest after the sun goes down. This little adventure ended successfully and no one was eaten by Sumatran tiger but our friend found a little leech on his stomach. We were really happy that it was just this one leech because the rainforest here is full of these little bloodsucking motherfuckers.
After two weeks in here we went to our classes for the first time. They told us that that some of the classes are compulsory and some are not. But we did a little uprising very quickly and we don’t have compulsory classes anymore hehe. We could choose anything to study: music, dance, theatre, photography, etc. We were thinking about going to pottery class and making our parents some nice ashtrays but instead of that we picked photography class. First class was quite funny because all of our classmates looked like they never had a camera in their hands. The biggest minus of this school is that you can smoke everywhere. Even in the classrooms. When I was going to this country I knew, that they smoke everywhere, but this was too much when 20 people smoke in one not very big classroom. Alan as a smoker didn’t give a monkey’s crap and when someone offered him a cigarette he didn’t hesitate for a second and smoked that little cancer stick with a smile on his face in the middle of the lecture.
The greatest thing was when we finally found a house for rent. 3 bedrooms, big living room, kitchen, one extra room but we don’t use it and very small bathroom with mandi (shower but Indonesian style). We also have access to the roof because the roof  is on da fire. Yeaah from the roof we have a really good view. The biggest plus of our own house was that we don’t have to share the bathroom with 6 other guys. The family who owns the house lives downstairs but they have their own entrance and we have our own. But they are very nice people and they gave us everything. Everyone got his own bed, they gave us a sofa, small table and a huge carpet to the living room and also some kitchen stuff.
So that’s it about our first feelings and experiences.
To be continued tomorrow. Stay tuned.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Padang Panjang Ultimate Survival

So the flight was all right, flight attendants were ugly, stewards were homosexual, space for legs was small and I woke up with open mouth with drool all over my shirt. Low cost classic.

Airport in Padang was nice, clean and built in their Padang style with gorgeous roofs. No problems with the luggage fortunately and mini bus was already waiting for us to get us to Padang Panjang. Bus was old and not very nice looking and we weren’t very excited about going in but we didn’t know that it was actually above standard for this place. Smoke some cigarettes, take some pictures and look around the way  to god forgotten town between three volcanoes. I have to admit that the way to p. panjang was beautiful and I was impressed. All the houses, everything was green and it was very exotic looking. Weather was perfect, sun was shining, little bit hotter than we are used to but that was expected and all in all after Jakarta it was a very pleasant experience.
We stopped on the way to eat something in a local warung (restaurant like thing). Fuck me it was funny as hell. We just came not knowing what’s the padang cousine like and they just started to bring food. More and more food until the table in front of us was full of little plates with all kinds of meat and veggies. Everything looked like it was made three days ago, which we learnt later was most probable. Afraid to eat it we ended up eating only rice with chilli what we thought is the safest thing to eat. The real funny thing was that the girls working in that warung started to take pictures of us immediately. It was crazy, they didn’t care one bit that we were eating they just took out their phones and started to take picture of all of us without one freaking bit of respect. It was like we are some kind of stars eating in their place though it didn’t feel very nice. Very intense.
After the meal we continued our journey to p. panjang. I fell asleep out of fucking nowhere and baaaaam woke up in the middle of a rain forest circling the small road we were on. Monkeys on the trees jumping all over the place and everything was really brutal. I just told gregi that fuck Bali we are in a better place. But we weren’t in p.panjang yet. When we finally arrived it seemed all right. The weather was cloudy and it was raining a bit but I just thought it’s bad luck. Typical padang architecture everywhere and everything seemed quite nice. I was expecting one main street and that’s it. It wasn’t like that, it seemed pretty big. I don’t know if my judgment is not okay because I miss judged the Jakarta hotel as well. Our coordinator took our passports for some paperwork and since we didn’t have a place to sleep yet they said we can stay in campus. So they took us there and when the bus stopped in front of this little house I prayed like fuck it won’t be the place we sleep in. It was.

Inside there was kitchen, living room and 4 bedrooms. Guys from Madagascar didn’t want to split so they took the mattresses and slept in the living room together. We took room with two beds. One better than the other and I with 190 cm had massive troubles in that 150cm bed. Because I’m a midget Indonesian. I was practically sleeping on wood since the mattress was paper like and geckos were fucking everywhere. Not that I don’t like geckos, I really do but I don’t like them shitting on me while sleeping.

So mildly depressed we wanted to look around the city and so we did. The problem happened when we wanted to leave the campus and security told us that we can’t because we don’t have our passports. Paranoia started to work instantly and we were just what the fucking for a moment. We told him that they were the ones who took our passports and we have nothing to eat. So they finally let us have food somewhere and going back from the walk the depression from the place just grew. So I took out 0,7l jameson and knew exactly what we have to do. Bottle was finished in 15 minutes.

Sunday, March 18, 2012


So let me continue with our intense story.

So after like 3 hours of waiting they put us into 4 minivans and because there were many of us they had to take our luggage in a separate pickup like truck, covering the luggage with a blanket. After that an hour trip to a hotel through crazy streets of Jakarta and no matter how excited the thing was after over 5 hours of waiting on the airport we all fell asleep. When we arrived to the hotel everything seemed fine, hotel looked nice from the outside and everything seemed to go smoothly. So we took of the minivans and waited for the damn pickup with our stuff. But the fucker wouldn’t come so without our stuff we went to check our rooms. Like I said it looked all right from outside. There were 24 beds in our room, one fucked up ventilator which was spreading the syphilis from the 50 year old, homemade air conditioner. Adding to that from these 24 beds 18 were taken by Chinese guys who had no intention to react to the very loud ‘Hello!’ from our filthy mouths.

So we said bye to long awaited rest and went to get something to eat. Food was good but the woman working there was so confused and messed up so many things that I think I got something for free. Gregi with another friend went with their laptops to the wifi zone and I went to Slovak crew for some alcohol which wasn’t such a great idea in the 99% humidity and 35 degrees heat. It just made me hotter.

Sleep was unexpectedly good, except when around 2 am another bus came with more Chinese students and they took them right into our room which was already full. So they slept on the ground. When I woke up around 3 am it looked like a chinese work-camp. Pure awesomeness.

The next day we were supposed to change hotels so after breakfast buses picked us up and moved us once again to a new place. I sat next to an Uzbek girl with amazingly hairy legs. Hotel was good, this time from inside as well; the only problem was that there were three people in each room. But the rooms were for two people only so three guys had to share a twin bed. So we took turns on who should sleep in the middle.
Because there was nothing for us to do the first day, we decided to walk around Jakarta a bit.
2 mistakes-> 1. We actually walked   and 2. We thought Jakarta is pretty and you can see something nice in there.
But when after 10 minutes of walking I had literally black face from the exhausts I finally understand why they wear those things on their faces. We finally found some kind of shopping center in which there was supposed to be nice fountain or whatever and right next to it there was a big store. So we went to buy water in the store, some beers as well for the evening in the hotel and something little to eat. I was the only one with a backpack so I had to take all the beers myself. FML. We saw an awesome sexist “ladies parking only” sign as well.
 On the way back we went to these little streets which were way more attractive than the main street full of bikes and cars. It wasn’t pretty but it was really authentic. You could see the poverty, you could see the way of living of these people and I think it was the highlight of our Jakarta walk.

Back in the hotel just some beers, and monkeys on animal planet.
On the second day there was program for us from the morning till late in the evening. We haven’t slept much though so after we listened to some old creepy woman talking about sex in Indonesia I went back to the room and slept. Then went for the lunch and back to sleep again. In the evening some guys from Slovakia had an idea to hit the town, have some European fun and with my 4 liters of hard alcohol in my luggage it was an obvious choice. So with Jameson in one hand and Bintang in the other one we walked around Jakarta finding a spot where we can have some Indonesian fun. We found a reggae bar in which we stayed until 5 am. Pretty drunk really.

The weirdest part of it all was that we actually woke up at 17:30 the next day. Like a damn boss. The opening ceremony was about to start and we haven’t eaten anything yet so we ran to the first warung we found and ate something, then put on some nice clothes and opening ceremony here we come. I was still pretty drunk so while everybody was dead serious and afraid of what is going to happen this year, I danced in the corner of that huge room. We met with these other students who were going to Padang Panjang as well and our coordinator told us that our flight is at 8 am next morning. After 75 minute flight we arrived to Padang.

Saturday, March 17, 2012


Before our intense trip to Indonesia there was a little stop in Prague from where we took off. Because our cool friend is living there at the moment he offered us that we can stay in his place, so we decided to go few days before our flight. These few days full of alcohol and Prague parties were, well let’s say pretty good start of our yearlong adventure.

The night before our flight it was raining heavily so we decided to stay home and have a calm evening with some beers and chat in our friends’ apartment. In the morning it was still raining pretty bad so we didn’t go anywhere around Prague as well, too lazy to walk around in the rain and the excitement of the trip was getting bigger. We bought some bagels and veggies and prepared something little for the 24 hour flight. After we finished we said goodbye to our friend, thanked him for everything and were on our way to Prague’s airport.
On the airport check-in without any problems, Alan’s last cigarette before the flight to Dubai and we were on our way to find our boarding gate. While waiting we met up with our next friend from Slovakia who was taking part in the same scholarship program and was on her way to Jakarta. Classic flight - movies, series, bored looking at the screens in front of us.

In Dubai we met with another guy from Slovakia who was taking the same flight from Dubai to Jakarta. So we walked around the airport, found a place to eat for free if you wait for connecting flight more than 3 hours (where we spent almost two hours), found a smoking room where you couldn’t see your feet through the smoke and looked a bit around the duty free shops for the alcohol we knew we’re not going to see for a long time. After these 4 hours of waiting we moved to our gate and the change of people’s appearance was drastic. Women in gilbabs and men in long white robes and awesome beards were a big sign of how Indonesia is going to look like. Our narrow minded thinking was stuck to just one thought of getting to Jakarta safely and hoping none of these guys take Islam too seriously. Flight was exactly the same just a bit longer with more food and more free beer. The flight attendant was pretty surprised when we asked for a nice cold beer at 5 a.m. when everybody was waking up asking for tea and coffee. What the fuck woman you’ve never seen Slovakians or what.

We arrived in Jakarta at around 15:30 local time and intense stuffiness and heat welcomed us. Well inside of the terminal it was pretty all right so we tried a lot not to go outside. Fortunately we had to wait in queue of around 80 people to check our visas in that beautifully air conditioned place. The whole visa checking was hugely weird because someone had to take picture someone hadn’t, someone was there for literally 15 minutes and we were done in around 20 seconds. After this we went to see if this awesome Indonesian system actually works and tried to find our luggage. Damn it felt good when we found it. At last we had to go out so we could meet up with some people to tell us what the next plan is.

The problemo was that when we actually went out there was nobody from the programe. So we stood in fucking 40 degrees heat for like half an hour not knowing what to do, smoking cigarettes like crazy what wasn’t very pleasant in the heat and humidity, and listening to annoying “Taxi mister??” for fucking everywhere. Yeah, around half and hour later we found the guy who took us to another room full of other students were we waited for another couple of hours. Gladly they gave us 500 000 rupiah (around 40 euros/50 US dollars) for these three days we are going to spend in Jakarta. Yeah our great east European nature told us to go buy beers with our new money and so we did. We drank some beers in the room where everybody was waiting and then some mini bus picked us up and took us to the hotel. But that’s for another time.