Monday, February 29, 2016

Two or three dimensional objects..
Our travels did not take us to the sophisticated side of town and the posh shopping malls were way down the agenda of us bogans-on-tour.
  Never the less, in Djakarta, was a store named Alun-Alun and found to have very appealing paraphernalia.  A certain genera of Indonesian craft is hard to resist and often features Batik motifs in nicely designed new styled accessories.  It was probably located in the shiny halls of Grand or plaza Indonesia mall.  The motorcyclists are most likely biding their time before they take over the shopping malls.  Who needs quiet?
 One who might be right at home in Jakarta is the young nouveau riche deputy mayor of Auburn.
 Flashy Italinate super sports and a Rolls; traffic penalties; suspicious conflict of interests; the right religion as seen on Youtube singing Quranic verses with his woman not to mention THE extravagant  public wedding under a mountain of roses. And publicity and controversy.
The petite bride-to-be might visit Pasar Baru environs to choose lace for her dress.  As it was her dress of French lace was lavishly adorned with Swarovski pearls and diamond crystals and took round the clock work over ten days from the dressmakers.
No, Auburn is not big enough for him.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

How much wealth is there to go around? We are not significant trading partners with Indonesia but both of us have roughly similar sized exports and imports with other countries. Similar sized trade but very thin on the ground when it is on account of 250 million Indonesians.  Compare that with our setting.
  But the Indonesian economy is fast growing. What forms of honourable and co-operative trade might be had and do the free trade agreements come into this?  Are we up for a daring unpredictable ride? Is that what it takes?
 We undertake complementary trade with Indonesia. It is close by. Open the borders. Innovate as Mr Turnbull says.
 Inconceivable levels of diplomacy and big economic questions tackled by the so called experts. 
 Business with other far afield players is not exactly a walk in the park such as seeing your brand name stolen counterfeited and traded.
What lies ahead?

Friday, February 26, 2016

No parking problems here in this jewelry store overseas.
 A parallel universe comes to mind when looking at Indonesia and our land. Does it imply similarity or contrast?
  While it is silly to base very much on a brief immersion, an impressive degree of self sufficiency is apparent in Indonesia, of course manufacturing, engineering and processing are successful and day to day goods are locally made - textiles, shoes, bags, foods, everything as in our good old days before imports.
  Many of the workers would have a low standard of living in a wicked climate and in polluted conditions so productivity is more an achievement.  Prosperity is there but squalor is not unusual.  

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Word of the week: Jabodetabek!  The region of Jakarta and its outer areas.  Most likely a veritable 'powerhouse'. The population is bigger than that of our entire continent.
Acronym: Jakarta etc.
Photos from cinemas in Bandung.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

 A classic holiday, Hibiscus Island, a scene where Toni Collette, Rachel Griffiths and co, as ABBA,  might sing Waterloo (as in movie)
 The Pacific island republic of Fiji has had an extreme cyclone.  Red Cross and other funds are seeking donations for emergency relief.  It is time to give something back in return for the good old days.
  Fiji was a British colony until 1970 and has a diversity of people and has progressed with political unrest and unique strategies.
 Australians have had roles in Fiji and have liked holidaying there since long ago while official relationships have had their ups and downs including some scrap about the Commonwealth not so long ago but this does not stand in the way of emergency aid.  The situation is a real 'Waterloo'. 

Monday, February 22, 2016

QE2 sailed into the Port of Newcastle this morning.  Visitors from all over will be whisked away on a good commodified tour of the vineyards. 
Found that the cruise ship is really named Queen Elizabeth.

Expats.  We will manage without Kate Blanchett, Kylie, Rolf Harris, Pell, Julian Assange, Rupert or Clive James. The once popular trek to London never the same. Clive James is in a life and death situation and writes of Johnny Cash in the edition on Jan 23rd of the Guardian and the comments provide insight.   

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Bring me my Bow of burning gold;   Bring me my Arrows of desire;
 Bring me my Spear  O clouds unfold!   Bring me my Chariot of fire!

England once transformed many a country and promoted development far and wide. 
Now the Old Dart itself has been 'colonized' by Europeans and others which has naturally led to difficulties and for various reasons the UK may go it alone without the EU.
 That has been our experience in Australia. We stand alone limited by a mere 24 million in population. American culture floods in but it won't alter the situation very much.   
 As foreigners, our visa requirements for the UK have been tightened up recently.  Some recruits were acceptable as are tourists.

The photo is of a probable administrative centre, the one and only Gedung Sate in Bandung, Indonesie.   Only a small part of the building is shown. It has a pole resembling a sate skewer on the roof line. The pedestrian crossing is rather intrusive and that's from aiming low so as to reduce the amount of sky and the glare rightly or wrongly - nothing technical.


Saturday, February 20, 2016

A precious character defying the mould in Jl Asia Afrika
 Can't say what the story is but corruption is in his sights. K RUPSI.  
Harking back to the good old days - if there were any.
Colonial powers were in Indonesie until relatively recent times, in living memory I suppose.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

How well did freedom of the press fare in Indonesie in Jl Asia Afrika?   Where does truth lie?
My old school motto was Veritas.
  The film, Spotlight, is about the Boston Globe and its uncovering of sexual abuse.  It is a fine movie, the degree of restraint is rarely seen in an American work.
Closer to home, Cardinal Pell is expected to give evidence by video link and crowd funding used to get aggrieved Australians to Rome to listen in.
Did someone pervert the course of justice in once giving Pell a role in the Vatican?
It has been declared too risky for Pell to undertake a flight back to Australian to appear in court. Thanks to the integrity of the medical profession.
Integrity? There is the instance of two amputated legs sent to landfill in Newcastle - heads will roll.
It is stated that doctors are not implicated in abusive harvesting of kidneys in Jakarta hospitals - was it the cleaner?

China says that installations on their man-made islands are only lighthouses!
Our treasurer toys with our common sense and is driven by ideology.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

 Buildings with striking names such as Gedung Merdeka and Gedung Sate demand attention.          Gedung Merdeka (hall) in Jl Asia Afrika has an interior and a story with international themes.
In imagination an interior related to pre-war Germanic aesthetic.
School girl visitors and teachers shared good will and photos with us.
Displays tend to focus on historical figures and incidentals rather than policies and plans and are apolitical, well, that is my fleeting impression.    

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Another corner in Jl Asia Afrika, Bandung.

Cold Bintang is terrific for the fluid intake and considered safe on some scores.
 According to the menu, several hotels served Australian beef as well as New Zealand Lamb conjuring up indigestion over live export.  But another hotel was drawing attention to some competition namely beef from the USA.
 Could be that Chicken is the closest that an average person might get to meat consumption and fish is available fresh and dried.  In fact, supermarkets stock a good range of bulk foods that are a real novelty in my eyes.  Gratuitous processed foods with redundant additives have made serious inroads with a price tag to match. 
 Trivial, but individual serves of butter had origins in New Zealand, France and some other place.  Our country has missed the boat over that export.  Of all things, Arnotts Tim Tams were there seemingly
 made under license. 

Monday, February 15, 2016

 The Savoy Homann is a knockout to those keen on buildings of this vintage. Unexpected in Bandoeng or Bandung, Java of the 1930s. Dutch city fathers delivered and established a city of note.
The streets are now akin to a drag racing strip which detracts just a tad from the good vibes.
Another sight was a tad disturbing namely a convoy of big luxury black Mercedes, maybe seven or ten with a police escort, conspicuous, all out of proportion in a scene of inequality.

Saturday, February 13, 2016

When it comes to fashion, Indonesian women usually looked dignified, be that an out of date description.  And apart from all other considerations about dress codes, Islamic fashion is elegant and flattering.
 The storm clouds did not amount to much rain, just threatened and scattered everyone.  Maybe there was a drought.  One garden was hand watered. Should have taken more notice of this corner for this street and our suburb was never exactly located again! Effortlessly.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

 An ice cream parlour in Jakarta goes right back to early times when it had Italian owners. Seemingly it has changed premises and pictures are displayed about history.  Currently the whole presentation is careless.


Tuesday, February 09, 2016

Tradition and cross dressing in the old city.  A favourite outing on Sunday.

Monday, February 08, 2016

From the Trans Jakarta bus to Harmoni, yes, Harmoni, could be seen (below) the site of a recent explosion. Now the kopi franchise is well fenced off. Some say it is risky in Indonesia, they would get out of there.

  In Australia it is risky to be a refugee.  The gulags at Nauru and Manus and prison on Christmas Island are hell holes and to have the hide to set them up off-shore is exploitative, colonial, cruel, stands for  maladministration, expense and totally negativity.
  Write an email today to the MPs and join leaders in the community who are currently more vocal about human rights and the return of victims to the gulags.

Sunday, February 07, 2016

From Dapur Babah Restaurant to street food.  A nasi-duck-egg-omelet plus this and that nicely filled the bill.
Observe how it is made before placing an order.  And I am wary of MSG although it is hardly a big threat.

Wednesday, February 03, 2016

 Here is a small business. Portable in bamboo, food and hot coals all ready for street food.
 It was outside an established eatery and an eastern fantasy par excellence. Chinese and Buddhist inspired, the artifacts and furnishings were unbelievable good against subdued black or red backgrounds. The photos do it no justice. In Jl Veteran 1....Jakarta.

Tuesday, February 02, 2016

And this building is not a parody.  So many of them should be a parody. (I am so judgemental).
Below. Right in the hub of lavish interior design/soft furnishings was a more humble shelter. Jakarta.
  In Indonesia, more often than not luxury equals ostentation - and how.