Category: Featured

Bye Bye Bunnies, Enter the Dragons

As the Year of the Rabbit nears an end, hundreds of expatriates in Jakarta’s Chinatown are preparing to return home for a month-long holiday. Most are young women...

Floods of Excuses

Floods by Pablo Neruda The poor live on low ground waiting for the river to rise one night and sweep them out to sea. I’ve seen small cradles floating by, the...

Resolutions – At Least Make it Interesting

When it comes to New Year’s Eve parties, there are only two corners of the room: The corner where some eyebrow-raiser is busy trapping girls and trying to impress by...

Run, Scott, Run !

1,250 kilometres in 25 days, from Bali to Jakarta, running through the sweltering 32 degree Equatorial heat and 75% humidity, dodging trans-Java buses, trucks and...

Photos by Darren Alderson

Have the Guts to Eat from the Street

There are two kinds of people in Jakarta: the ones that eat street food and the ones that don’t.   The ones that do boast about late-night haunts, one-of-a-kind...

The Bargain Tree Hunter

If you plan on walking into a department store this week and dropping Rp 3.2 million on a six-foot tall fake Christmas tree, don’t read this story. But if Christmas...

Deck the Malls

Criticising Jakarta’s shopping malls for their ostentatious Christmas displays is too easy. We can feel sickened by the crass commercialisation of religious holidays...

Uneasy Money

Gambling, like prostitution and corruption, is an age-old vice that is part of Indonesia’s culture. Despite being criminalized in the 1970s, the gaming industry is...

A young Darryl Patton

Darryl Patton: Godfather of the Expat Bars

Darryl Patton, 1941-2011 Englishman Darryl Patton was the innovator behind many of the early expatriate bars in Jakarta, pioneering much of the nightlife scene as we...

De Boroboedoer

Treading in Jogjakarta’s Ancient History

Jogjakarta and its Hill of Stones Anyone with but the flimsiest knowledge of Indonesia will know the pivotal role Jogjakarta has played. In culture, in rebellion, in...

Jakarta on a clean air pollution day

Jakarta Air Pollution: Not all Doom, Gloom & Catastrophe!

In 1994 there were an estimated 1.38 million vehicles (cars, motorcycles, lorries and buses) in Jakarta; 27 years later in 2011 the total number of vehicles is estimated...

Health Remedies

As the dry season turns wet and the rains come knocking on our doors (and, in my case at least, dripping through our ceilings and onto our computers) it’s time for...

Plate 2.1

How Indonesia’s Spices Unrolled the Map of the World

  As Indonesia prepares to celebrate 66 years of independence it is an appropriate moment to turn the clock back 560 years to the middle of the 15th century, before...

Tanamur Sign

Tanamur: Long Gone but Not Forgotten

“Every dog has its day” goes the old saying. Yes, that’s certainly true for Tanamur – a good number of years have now passed since Tanamur’s popularity reached...