Posts Tagged With: Jakarta

Bali: Island of Gods…of Peace…of Love

Great news, Manila backpackers! Cebu Pacific finally announced its newest international destination! It will be launching a direct service from Manila to Bali (Yeah! It’s Bali) on March 2013. Ay-yay-yay!

Bali is now super duper accessible to us budget travelers. No need to fly through Jakarta or Singapore or Kuala Lumpur which can also be expensive.

Betcha Buy Bali Now!`

Betcha Buy Bali Now!

No, I am not booking for this flight. It may be cheap, but I still ain’t got breads for this. I’m a cheapskate sometimes. Then, why am I so happy? It only means that Manila-Bali flights can already be included in the great P1 (piso) Seat Sale! Now, that would be something I can afford. Who wouldn’t want to visit the Island of Gods with just less than P3,000 airfare budget?

Ayo, teman-teman, mari kita mengalami budaya Bali dwipa jaya. (Come, friends, let us experience the culture of the great Bali island.)

“In Bali, there is no single day without a ceremony — a balanced relationship among humans, gods, and nature.”



Disclaimer: I suck in speaking Bahasa Indonesia. I used an online English-Indonesian translator and asked my friend if I stated it correctly.

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7th Anniversary Date

Cebu Pacific Seat Sale

Cebu Pacific Seat Sale

I was about to sleep but I decided to check my Facebook first before turning in. This was the first thing I saw. So, I spent the next hour trying to book a flight for the boyfriend. I don’t have a credit card and I still owe my mom and sister my flight back home for December so I was panicking not knowing how I can book. Fortunately, the airline had an over-the-counter payment option. As soon as I decided on the dates, I just guessed boyfriend’s passport number and proceeded with the reservation. I sent him a message after that he should pay the fare at the bank the following morning.

It’s a crazy seat sale. Cebu Pacific can be cunning at times but you can easily forgive them for their super dooper cheap fares and I couldn’t just let it pass. Here’s why…



The base fare is just P1 for one way. I just hate the fuel surcharge but, of course, I couldn’t really complain. It’s still pending and I’m hoping that I would be receiving the confirmed itinerary tomorrow. Yay! He’s bound for Jakarta but we are still deciding whether we will stay in Jakarta then visit Bandung or go back to Bali. I could also bring him to Yogyakarta to see Borobudur and Prambanan. It’s still a long way to go but I can’t help but feel excited. It’s going to be another awesome anniversary! This time, we’ll make sure he won’t get offloaded. Documents will definitely be ready for this. Ay-yay-yay!

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Holy Week in Bandung

I still couldn’t believe it happen.

I couldn’t believe it could happen to me. Couldn’t believe it happened in Bandung -a place where I feel much safer compared to Jakarta.

Ate Lan and I went to Bandung last Friday to spend the Holy Week with fellow Filipinos. They usually meet in church and gather after mass for some snacks and chat.

It was a backpacker’s plan. We didn’t intend to spend a lot. We stayed in a kost (like a boarding house) and no plans to go shopping in the factory outlets in Dago.

We arrived at around 12:30. We unpacked and went out to eat lunch then meet some friends. But before we can even decide where to eat, two guys (I’m not even sure if they were both guys) in a motorcycle had my bag. I felt like it was in slow motion but they were about more than a meter when I realized they already have my bag and I screamed.

I screamed then people from the restaurants and stores came out. The nearest security guard and some others tried to run after them, but what can they all do? The snatchers were riding a motorcycle.

They got my bag. In it is a camera, a cellphone, a purse with 1.3 million rupiahs (about 6,000++ pesos) and ATM card, a pair of Coach sunglasses, and make up kit. I would have felt OK if those were only the ones taken. I can earn the money and buy the rest. They were old stuffs anyway and needs to be replaced soon. I could have replaced it already but I was just trying to keep myself buying since they were still usable.

I wanted to cry but I couldn’t. It was already 1:00 p.m. by then, no breakfast, no lunch, but I lost my appetite.

But it was more depressing because that bag was a Louis Vuitton Speedy 35 I got from my mom. That night, I sent them a message asking them to have my Globe number blocked. I told them my phone was snatched. My mom replied telling me to be careful and that I should not use my phone while walking, that I should just keep it in the bag on silent mode.  She didn’t know that it was in the bag. She didn’t know it was the in the LV bag. She didn’t know that it was the bag that was snatched. Now, I don’t know how to tell her.

I couldn’t tell her. I couldn’t because I lost it in Bandung. Because why was I in Bandung when she kept telling me not to always go out of town.

People said that everything happens for a reason. They kept telling me that it aims to tell me something. Is it because I am not supposed to go there? That I’m supposed to be saving and not going anywhere for vacation? I don’t really know. Because for me, I got invited there to spend the Holy Week, to mingle with fellow Filipinos, to celebrate the Holy Week the Filipino way.

We’re back here in Jakarta. We didn’t get to attend the Easter mass anymore. We left last night and arrived past midnight. I couldn’t stay there because I don’t have money. It was all in the bag. I went there on a budget but I returned home bankrupt.

I was thinking, I could have used my other bag. I wouldn’t have felt this bad. It wouldn’t have been stolen in the first place.

But there are lots of things I am still thankful for. Ate Lan and Kuya Luis paid for everything. Fellow Filipinos showed sympathy and concern. Ate Karen, paid for our lunch. Kuya Marcie prepared our breakfast. Ate Almira and friends prepared some snacks. All of them provided nice stories.

I am thankful to my other friends, Indonesians but Filipinos by heart, Kuya Arie and Kuya Gustaf. They are always ready to help. I also got to meet new friends Kuya Reza and Ate Cresny ? (I don’t know how it’s spelled). It made me forget for a while because of all the laugh we had last night.

It was also a blessing that Ate Lan realized she still had my allowance. I was able to have some money for the next day. I also planned to bring my laptop that day but I opted not to because I don’t want to carry something heavy. It could have been worse if I had brought my passport with me. Ate Lan and Kuya Luis brought theirs. It would cause too much hassle if it was one of their bags.

I lost a lot. I don’t even know how to replace all of it before I go home this June. But I am still blessed with a lot of other things. I was not hurt physically. We returned home in one piece. I saw great people around me.

To my friends, Ate Lan, Kuya Luis, Kuya Arie, Kuya Gustaf, thank you. I couldn’t thank you enough.

To my new found friends, Kuya Reza and Ate Cresny, let’s plan the Pinoy cook-out soon.

To my fellow Filipinos in Bandung, Kuya Marcie, Gingr and Ate Pats, Ate Joan, Ate Karen, and everyone else. Thanks for the help and warm welcome. See you again soon.

To the people who tried chasing them, thank you for helping.

To the the lady with child asking for alms, thank you for making me realize I have so much else to be thankful for.

To God, it was definitely a tough test.

Happy Easter, everyone!

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Jogja Weekend

The trip in Jogja was superb. Mainly because it was my first vacation trip since I got here in Indonesia. Going around Jogja was definitely a breath of fresh air after being stuck in Jakarta. I got to relax and forget about the bustling life in Jakarta. Almost everything is better there. Lighter traffic, fresher air, cheaper prices, more culture, and friendlier people.

The people even try their best to speak in English. Here in Jakarta, if you speak in English, never expect a reply or a help at that. I remember asking for a shirt size in the mall, I thought the sales lady was just getting it. I waited then wondered what’s taking her so long. Turns out, she never went to get the size but went to the other side of the store away from me. I thought that living in the metro would make people learn English more because of work.

Bapak Nunung, our driver, was great. We, basically, slept everytime we’re in the car. He drove us into the best places to eat and brought us to our destinations without questions. He always greets us with a smile even if he had to wait long in the parking lot. He even texted us to ask if we have safely arrived in Jakarta and wished to see us all again soon.

I’m definitely bringing Elo and my family there.

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Meeting Yogyakarta

I was really excited that I slept at 3am. We left the house at 5am for our 8am flight!. Garuda Indonesia was far better than Philippine Airlines in terms of comfort (not being a traitor, but it’s the truth). It is my first time to board a plane other than PAL or CebuPac, so cut me some slack for getting giddy about having my own  cabin screen. It was fun to be able to listen to music, play games or watch videos and movies on Economy class. I was all smiles when there are Korean movies available.   My watching was cut short as the flight was not even an hour long. We reached Yogyakarta’s Adisutjipto Airport. Our rented car was waiting and was ready to take us to our first destination, Surakarta or Solo. It was a 2-hour drive from the airport and we mostly slept through the ride. We had our lunch at Omah Sinten which serves tasty traditional Javanese and Dutch dishes. My favorite was the free appetizer which is a bowl of Cassava and Ube chips. Ube chips were definitely new but a real superb. We were very happy with all the delicious dishes we ordered. It was a great plus that the food were all very cheap (compared to Jakarta’s prices).

Lunch at Omah Sinten

We also visited the palace. We had to go through a walled street leading to it but it was unfortunate that it was closed (or we’re really not allowed. I didn’t understand the lady by the door). So in the end, we practically did nothing in Solo other than lunch then went on our way back to our hotel.

Tower and Portal of Kraton Surakarta.

Malioboro was renowned as the Batik shopping haven. Passing through it reminds me of Baguio’s Session Road (only Malioboro is a flatland street compared to Session Road’s uphills and downhills). It was lined with Batik stores and food stalls. We went to our hotel room to unpack then went on our way to Taman Sari. It was a former water castle made for the sultan’s wives for reflection. It was so big that you could get lost inside it’s labyrinth-like passageways. It was good to have the guide who really gave us good tour (it was in Bahasa so it was basically Kuya Gustaf who understood everything). He was like a frustrated photographer as he choreographed most of our shots inside. What caught my attention was the head of one of the statues that fell from the top of the building to the ground.

This rock is a statue that fell from the water castle's building.

The government is trying its best to protect and preserve this historic site but it was unfortunate that they are having a hard time doing so as the place was already packed with people who built their houses within the walls of the ruins. Just imagine Intramuros having settlers inside its walls. Not a nice place eh?

We also went to the 2 mysterious trees. People are challenged to walk between the trees in a straight line. The wish of anyone who can get passed the trees walking in a straight line will be granted. So far, only 1 person was able to do it. We also tried, and I can say, it was really hard. We even practiced walking on a different direction just to check if we can walk in a straight line with our eyes blindfolded.  Turns out, we can, but never between the two trees.

With eyes blindfolded, get past the two trees in a straight line and have your wish granted.

We ended our trip for the day with a dinner at another Javanese restaurant. It was a bit more expensive than what we had for lunch. Apparently, the sultan himself goes to that restaurant to eat.

So that caps off my March 23…tomorrow, or rather later, is Temple day.

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