Monthly Archives: October 2009

Some of the good eating place in Balikpapan I found after one month living in Balikpapan:

Rawon Empal (meat with black soup): At Balikpapan baru front commercial place, next to an electric shop. Rawon Empal from this place is soooo good it makes me always want to go there. They also sell Soto Ayam and Bakpau (meatbun).

Ayam Goreng Presiden (President Fried Chicken): on Balikpapan Baru Fantasy Junction, try to locate this place. It is on the outer side of the Fantasy Junction near the road that lead to Sungai Ampal. The fried chicken in this place is so delicious it melts my mouth.

Solaria on Hypermart Balikpapan: Rawon in this place is delicious. Try it if you go to Hypermart Balikpapan.

Ayam Goreng Penyet: if you go from Sungai Ampal toward Index Furnishing direction, take a left turn and take the road toward Kimia Farma, but watch out for an eating place offering this ayam goreng penyet (squeezed fried chicken). Good taste, good price.

Seqo Ayam Lawuh Lodo: If you go toward Sungai Ampal from Gunung Guntur or Karang Rejo, don’t miss this place. Only open at night, placed right after the motorbike only fuelstation. The spiced fried chicken in this place is top notch!


There are lotsa things happening for the last week. Many-many things. Let’s see.

From Monday to Wednesday I tried to replace my breakfast of Nasi Kuning (Yellow Rice) with four loaves of bread with jam and peanut butter. I can hold on for three days and but my body went haywire on the third night. At first I thought I was just tired. I reverted back to Nasi Kuning as breakfast but with no luck. For three days my head was pounding with headache. On Friday my back got hurt. This is the classic signs of “Masuk Angin (wind intrusion)”. You won’t find this in medical reference, this is one of those Only in Indonesia items 🙂

The medical reference tells me about deposition of lactic acid on my body that is caused by cold draft of air conditioners or winds. Make sense. I drive motorbike each day to get me everywhere and causing me to be pounded by wind drafts on my chest. I have air conditioner on my house to cope with Balikpapan hot and humid climate. Plus, the rainy season seems to have come to Balikpapan. 

So I decided to do what traditionally have been done by many people: back scratching. I applied warming balm on my temples, back of my neck, and my back and then scratch those places with a singaporean coin. Not much help there. When my cousin who accompanied me each night came home, I told him to scratch me because I have Masuk Angin. He then scrathed me. The results? I feel better and able to sleep deeper than previous three days. So deep, I awoke this morning at 7 a.m although I slept at 9 p.m last night. I slept for 10 hours. Probably because my body demands those lost sleep hours.

Okay, enough about that.

I lived in a row of newly or being built houses that are built close to each other. My neighboring house on my left has been undergoing expansion for more than week now. The pounding of hammers, the cutting of the woods, the grinding of the grindstones, the screamings of the working labors now accompany me each weekend. Not that I am that bothered with the sounds, I am simply worried that their works will collapse my walls because you can feel their pounding on my walls. Yeah, the house were built that close.

This week also marked my first week returning to after office fun volley ball session after so many weeks absent. It was fun. We play simply for the laughs and to find some good sweat to let go that feel of cold and dryness we get after a day inside a cooled box that is our office. It has been a fun occassion for participants every thursday. Besides biking and walking, this is my only sport 😉

Two guys come to my house yesterday’s afternoon. They offered me curtain making to adore and protect my house. I agreed to their offers and but I told them that I can not pay them right away since I have budgeting allocations already for my wedding, my housing loan annuity, and day to day lives. They understand that and will be waiting for my call. Always good to have people with good skills come to offer their services directly at home. I have had a guy offered me to make a canopy on my carport but I refused cause I have no car, just a bike. I also had a guy offered me to make precipitation tank for my water supply but I refused cause the water supply is in adequate quality already.

That’s my update as Lord of A Small House 🙂

I work for a multinational company that is proud of their excellencies in work ethics and punctualities; a bastion of qualities, if you will. I have been working for this particular companies for a year and four months after having my tenure for other company of the same field but lesser remunerations (and qualities).  

This week, from wednesday to thursday, I attented training on MERAK PEEP, a software that help petroleum engineers and business planners to asses the value of a project. It was a good training, both refreshing and eye opening. There are more to this software beyond what I have been doing with it. It’s a good training all and all, although the room where the training was done could benefit more from less air conditioning. Felt like I was in the mountain but without the fresh air.

The weather was not altogether sunny. Gloom with heavy rain poured several times during days and nights. Not that I have trouble with the weather. Transports are available on call if I want to go somewhere in the complex where the training was held. They are usually reliable.

But there is no such things as 100% reliable. The last day in the compound, where I was supposed to be picked up at 6.30 a.m, turned out to be a day where incompetencies accumulated. The story goes like the following:

My friend and me have a flight at 9.10 a.m. We need to be at the airport at 8.10 at least to have proper check-in. This being Indonesia and all, you can not at 100% sure that the schedule would go as planned. Sometimes they are late, but surprise surprise, sometimes they are much earlier. So we Indonesian need to go to airport TWO HOURS earlier than flight schedule just to be sure.

So yeah, we wanted to be picked up at 6.30 a.m jut to make sure.

So then it was 6.45 a.m. Several pick up cars went by and none of them were scheduled to pick us up. We were curious, so we call the transport dispatcher. He said the car is rolling.

7 a.m. No cars were coming. My friend go furious and called the dispatcher again and this time they said that the car has just been rolled out. Stupid, my friend said, we clearly ordered 6.30!

7.15. No cars were coming. We got furious. My friend called the dispatcher and unload his anger to him. The dispatcher apologized and said the car was in another location, picking up some guys who are still eating.

At this point our anger welled up. 

7.30 the car came, bring with him two other passangers. Young, inexperienced, but looked like spoilt brait and downright snobbish.

So we got in the car, and the driver gave no apologizes whatsoever. I kept my silence, but my friend blew up in anger and got furious with the driver. The driver pointed at his early passangers. Then my friend got furious with the early passangers who looked like a bunch of new recruits with no field experiences and ego as inflated as the wall street before the toxic credits meltdown. My friend lashed out time and time again during the drive from the compound to the airport. He blamed the other passangers for not attentive to the times and for making us suffer because we were forced to skip breakfast and wait for an hour while they enjoy their morning with breakfast. He then looked at the supposed scheduling of the driver and pointed out that the other two passengers supposed to be picked up at 6.30 too but they showed their incompetencies, non-punctualities, irresponsibilites and their insensitivities by ordering breakfast at 6.30 and kept us waiting while they eat. 

Finally, after my friend lashed out for half an hour or so, one of the young ones, the snobbiest looking of them, explained that they ordered the car to be arrive at 7 a.m. 

So my friend then lashed out at the driver and said why didn’t he picked us up first if their schedule was 7 a.m? The driver said it was the dispatcher who told us to pick them first. Then he grunted and got furious with the dispatcher.

At this point, we are not sure whose to blame. The fact is that we were discarded, misinformed, and kept hungry due to the non-punctuality of the transportation. 

It was ten minutes after checked in that we are told to board the plane. What if the driver picked us up 50 minutes past 7?We would be discarded even more!

And to our surprise, the snobs were nowhere to be found, so we assumed they are flying with company plane that the passengers supposed to be get picked up by BUS AND NOT BY CAR! 

The incompetencies baffled me.

It was good that the driver and those two snobs utter their apologizes, otherwise we would curse them forever.

One: By acknowledging that some parts of our college students or college graduates have Miyabi embedded so deep in their culture, deep enough for them to write a story about a storymaker who are so enthralled by Miyabi he wants to kidnap her; deep enough for a filmmaker gang to consider the story worth filming and not hesitant on doing so is so…I don’t know, not signaling a good paths on the way the culture of this nation will go forward.

Two: By putting Miyabi, a proven, open wide, full frontal, pornographic cultural icon into our fledgling modern movie industries which already filled with half-baked pornographic elements will potentially be setting back the Indonesian movie industries clock to a decade or two decades ago where the movies produced are either crotch oriented or scream oriented. The industry will fall into a trap of easy movie making instead of going the way of more intelligent movies like Ada Apa dengan Cinta and Merantau. You can point the blame on moviegoers also, but if the industry refuse to go the way of Gadis Metropolitan and strive forward to produce modern, good, and educating movies (hey, even Knocked Up and Pineapple Express is an educating movie, albeit a little “adult”), then the moviegoers will get educated, and soon the entire industri will autocatalyzed into something better.

But if Miyabi is set on stone and make into a trend, then, wow, can not imagine what if there is a story about kidnapping Julia Perez or kidnapping Sarah Azhari in the future…..

Three: The underlying problem about religion, especially in an Islam dominated country, will trigger several morale and cultural debates, aside from obvious religious debates. The fact that some of you already pointed out that it is given that Indonesian people are morally hypocritical is not helping either. Pointing out the obvious is easy, painting people’s value by using general stereotype is not helping, and acting like the cultural perversion is not a big thing (everybody does Miyabi, so what?) is aggravating the already confused grass root people.

Where should they go if the rise of Ayat-ayat Cinta and Ketika Cinta Bertasbih 1 and 2 is contemporary with the rise of Paku Kuntilanak and Menculik Miyabi? Where should they go if the rise of Jilbab as fashion trend is contemporary with the coronation of Putri Indonesia who comes from a place traditionally associated with Jilbab but doesn’t use one?

The (alas) inevitable arrival of Miyabi should be seen with wary eyes to those who feel that something is amiss in the modern culture of Indonesian middle class. That something is clear moral direction.

A task of any homeowners everywhere is to fill up their houses with things used daily: mops, brooms, ironing tables, chairs, racks for dishes, utensils, etc. I just did this task yesterday, bought everything up in the local Hypermart, a giant hypermarket with everything in it. I bought a hammer, dishwashing sponge, two small boxes, an ironing table, a foldable chair, a broom, a mop, dust collector, small dish rack, naphthalene, clothlines, foldable cloth hanger, etc. Those things make my little house looks more like a house than before 😉

Being a lone lord of a small house, I simply unable to wash my clothes alone and have to send them to a laundry. The way the laundry works is that you put your laundry in, they measure the weight of the whole package and charge you accordingly, and you get them after three days. 

That’s how it supposes to work.

But the thing is: sometimes they are not able to finish it in three days due to varius reasons such as broken washing machine, crazy weather, etc. I need to very cautious with my clothes and use them as required only. I even need to do laundry on my own underwear on my own least I don’t have ones when required. I guess being a lone fighter teaches you to be wary of everything.

For the past few years, I have been thinking that my true life is to tell stories to people. I love thinking about stories. I also love to simply does random story telling in my head, for my own pleasure. It feels that stories I composed and played in my head are my own tranquilizer, my crack, my dope, my weed. I feel calm after playing them. 

Is there any psychological explanation for such condition? No? Then let me compose a story about it anyway, on my own term, for my own pleasure.

There are stories in my head I wish to share to all. This is one of them. Tales of Vanima Forest is a tale of high fantasy set on a world called Earth, where sentient races live and fight to continue for their lives. It features Elves, Orcs, Gnomes, Dwarvs, Goblins, Trolls, and Humans, twenty thousands years since the fall of the Split Star. 

Please follow it 🙂