Category: Observations

The Tastes of Paradise

Anyone who has set foot in Indonesia will be familiar with these local versions of products that expatriates learn to either delight in or sneer at. Some are an acquired...

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Going at Home and Going Away

I had only been back in the UK for a day and already I was in a public lavatory watching another man’s vigorous actions. After some rubbing and squirting, he invited...

The Big Bang Bang Theory

I was born and raised in the UK, where there are around 6.6 guns for every 100 people (this is the highest number I could find in any recent statistical study). As an...

Potential is a Dangerous Aphrodisiac: Indonesia on a Tinder Box of Aspirations

I have been traveling to Indonesia on business for more than a decade and I find it amazing how pervasive and persistent the discussions on the “Potential of...

Disconnect and Find Yourself

Ever spent a day without your phone? You should give it a try! I remember growing up in Nottingham, in a house with a black and white TV and no phone. Some of you...

RE: Maid in Indonesia

Dear Editor, “Maid in Indonesia” touches upon a few very important items that most foreigners who live and work here can appreciate. Having employed a few domestic...

Don’t Burn Our Future!

Aradhya Sharma, a 10th grader at Singapore School, Bona Vista reminds us of the hazards of burning rubbish and the importance of practicing the three Rs for the future...

How Do You Solve a Problem Like Jakarta Traffic?

In Jakarta, there appears to be no discernible pattern for the traffic. One expat shares his observations about the city's congestion problem.

Traditional Chinese Medicine and Western Healthcare

Oh, East is East and West is West, and never the twain shall meet. Who hasn’t heard and probably used this first line of Kipling’s Ballad of East and West....

Opinion: Saving Indonesia from the Mistakes of the West

Indonesia is a place that travellers speak of as a paradise. Advertisements for leisure travel depict pristine white sand beaches, palm trees swaying in cool tropical...

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Lost In Bali

Daniel Pope recalls a new year that didn’t begin well I am a mobile technology geek. As well as carrying a five-inch Nokia phone, I keep in my shoulder bag an...

Return of a Friend

Jakarta’s Jalan Jaksa was once a great place for making odd, surreal and semi-imaginary friends, as Daniel Pope recalls. When I heard that Bruce O’Flanagan (not his...

Coping in the Big Durian

Jakarta isn’t a city for everyone. Many of the problems aren’t unique to large cities in emerging economies: poor sanitation systems, pollution, and rampant...

How Backstreet Bali Money Changers Cheat

Unseasoned visitors to Bali, relieved they’ve safely negotiated Ngurah Rai’s fickle Customs and Immigration, suddenly get hit by the cacophony that’s Indonesia....