A video compilation

I found enough videos on my phone to make a compilation of our adventures in Indonesia over the past two years. It’s a little bitter sweet to watch as we approach our last week here.

Enjoy!

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Weekend escape to PR

We escaped to Pelabuhan Ratu Saturday evening via a three hour car ride with sleeping children. We arrived around 10:00pm and checked into the Sunset Plaza hotel, which was more like a hostel with tiny $20 rooms and shared bathrooms. But the free breakfast, pool, beach front access, and outdoor restaurant terrace were perfect for our lazy Sunday of swimming and card playing.

We did some exploring and found the point where the green lady (Queen of the southern Java Seas) supposedly jumped to her death. It was incredible to see Indonesians leave her offerings from the cliffs overlooking the ocean. We had to leave quickly though because it started to rain. So we hiked back down the cliff and ducked into a warung for a coconut.

Once we realized the rain wasn’t going to let up anytime soon, we got some help from a few locals to wave down an angkot for a ride back to the hotel. It was in the angkot that we let the experience sink in. Indonesia can be so incredibly beautiful sometimes.

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You know You’ve Lived in Indonesia for 18 months When…

-You forget America has four seasons, that is until you open Pinterest…

-Your weekend uniform consists of cut-off shorts and flip flops on Saturday, bathing suit on Sunday… And it’s November.

-You’ve finally mastered a complete dinner in a rice cooker. Last week consisted of red rice with steamed fish and asparagus (a delicacy found in Jakarta last weekend).

-Amusement parks are no longer thought of as expensive and with long lines. They are cheap, quick, but hellishly hot.

-You’re finally starting to get a hang of Bahasa, yet only have a month left living in the country.

-Your English is starting to sound like your Bahasa. Short. To the point. And with a bit more surprise. Whaa?! Weeeh!

-Walking around a mall with a grocery cart is totally normal.

-Sweating from 6:00 am to 6:00 pm is totally normal.

-Bug Bites. Every day. Normal.

-You reach some sort of milestone when you can call the grocery down the road and in Bahasa, ask them to deliver Bintang to your house as you host a party.

-You realize you hate Bintang at this point and decide to nurse the bottle of rum you bought at Duty-Free 6 months ago.

-A quick 20 km drive to a restaurant or park takes over 2 hours because of traffic and you come prepared with bottles of water and snacks… Because duh… It’s Indonesia.

-You no longer stress over wearing suntan lotion.

-You realize you haven’t had 100% hearing in your left ear for over 3 weeks and you still refuse to see a local doctor about it.

-You begin to realize what makes you truly homesick: certain rights, comforts, and expectations that mean nothing here.

-You begin to mark an X on each completed day on the calendar. One month left.

-You look at Air Asia prices daily. $100 for a weekend trip to Bali. Worth it?

-You try to remember what you packed away before you moved to Indonesia and can’t remember a single item.

-You go to bed at 8:00 pm because staying up any later than that on a week day is too painfully lonely.

Trip Home

Our way home started at 6:30am on Gili Air and ended at 11:30pm in Bogor. It was a long day, that went rather smoothly if not for the 2 hour flight delay. But I guess it just goes to show that even living so close to the Gilis does not make it easy to get there.

To briefly break it down it takes: a public ferry ride from Gili Air to Lombok, taxi from Bangsal to Senggigi, a brief stop at our favorite Italian Bed and Breakfast for lunch and a quick swim, local angkot around town for shopping, taxi to the Mataram airport, flight to Jakarta, and another taxi to Bogor. Whew.

A bit bummed to have left such a paradise. It really is my kind. Eliana hit her groove and owned that island. She electively spoke Bahasa to anyone who would listen and made a couple of sets of new girlfriends just by walking up to them and introducing herself. Such confidence! Its like something clicked for her on that island. We’ll see how it transitions in Bogor…

It feels like I’ve finally kicked off my two month version of making my way back home. My real home. And I think I’ll need the full two months to do it.

I think it’ll go by quickly, at least I kind of hope it does. Because I’m really craving my home; my city, my house, my complete family.

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A week in the Gilis

… Does the body good.

But you sure have to earn this little island of paradise. It took us a taxi at 6:30, a bus to the airport, then a plane to Lombok, a private car to the harbor, then a speed boat to the Gilis with an arrival around 3:00pm!

It’s worth it though. We checked into our cottage, swam, and ate an amazing dinner at Scallywags, an outstanding organic food restaurant.

I’m just waking up with a plan to work out by the pool with a friend, eat and swim at the beach all day and maybe order the same dinner again tonight because it was just that damn good. Or maybe I’ll walk around the island this afternoon and explore. No cars or motorcycles here… Just bicycles and horse carriages.

It’s lovely, really. One of my favorite places in earth.

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No longer Princess Slowpoke

Eliana has decided that she no longer likes the Hash name Princess Slowpoke, so she finally picked up the pace on the last run. We brought friends, which helped, and this particular trail was stunning (Sentul area). These runs have been one of our favorite things to do since living in Indonesia. Looking forward to the next.

On on!

ps
Special thanks to our friend Trishna for taking such excellent photos on our camera!
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Our favorite farms

We visited a few of our favorite farms today. One is our friends, who once lived in our Sabin neighborhood, but left around the same time we did for bigger pastures.

Then Elle and I went to Sauvie Island to pick flowers and berries. Here are some shots from the day, the last is a comparison between Ellie at 1.5 and 4.5. Same kid. Same farm. Time flies!

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An interview with Expat Arrivals

I recently was interviewed by an expatriate resource, Expat Arrivals, on life in Indonesia. It’s interesting to read this as I’m on holiday in Portland for the Lebaran Break. These past few days have been filled with family and friends, and a lot of reflection.

Check out the interview here.

I’ll be posting pictures from our trip home soon. In the meantime, here are some from our layover in Narita, Japan. Narita was a surprisingly beautiful little city to explore. I am actually looking forward to our 19 hour layover on the way back!

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