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I promised honesty …

When I decided to  write a blog I also promised myself it would be an honest one. That means I wouldn’t just write about the nice things, the pretty and the beautiful. I wanted to tell about the good and the bad on being on the road. On my own.

This is the way life is.  Like when you prepare a casserole and you balance the flavours.

Yesterday was a good day. It turned out to be a good one. I saw nice things, walked a lot,  good photos were taken so I got back to the hostel and started preparing for today, the day I would fly to Jakarta. I didn’t bring much clothes so everyday is laundry day. Fixed that, had a shower, put clean clothes on, two minutes later I was soaking wet again, dried my face again, went to the restaurant, the only one with only locals, and ordered something spicy. They made big eyes, I told them I would be fine and then they were checking on me  all the time to see if I could stand the heat. Yes and I loved it. I have no idea what it was, apart from that it was good, but I think it was some sort of vegetarian casserole with unidentifiable  ingredients and I think it was arabik. The hostel I was staying at was at Arabic Street. Hint…

While I was eating I witnessed two weddings and the other guests checking on me in a very very curious and polite way. I don’t mind. It humors me that I am some sort of attraction.

Back to the hostel, talked with two young women from Colombia for a long time, sharing travel stories, how to do where, you have to come and visit and so on. One of the says Have you been bitten a lot by mosquitoes, No, bla bla bla …. bedbugs. No,  it can’t be, but perhaps check?

I have to get up at 5.15 am to catch the train to the airport so I go to bed early. Can’t sleep, the girls in the room, we are 12, go back and forth, packing things in plastic bags (that is a mortal sin if you stay in a dorm if you ask me), chitchatting, something happening all the time. I’m calm, nothing to get upset about. And finally I sort of drift away until I wake up an hour and a half later with a fright because of the activity in the dorm .

There are bedbugs. Drama!

I check my bed. Clear. My big bag has been stored on the top of the metal locker, the small one inside the locker. I grab my things and leave the room. It’s 1.30 am.

Metro not open so I have to wait in the hostel until 5.45. I shower, dress and take my stuff to the the terrace on top floor. The best thing to do is to keep away from everyone. Long story short, I didn’t get any sleep. Left as early as possible for the airport. Too early.

Coffee. Hungry. Junk food everywhere. Chatted with a dear friend for a long time. Good. Flight. Good.

Jakarta.

Several other travelers told me Jakarta is a city one can skip. How can that be. For as long as I remember the names Jakarta and Kuala Lumpur has always intrigued me. The sound of these names, the way they taste when pronounced promises magic. How can people say to me not to stay in Jakarta but move on.

I decide to actually listen to the advice. I haven’t booked any where to stay, if I get a train ticket to next place I’ll go, if not I’ll find something. Get off the plane and manage to buy myself a ticket on the bus to Gambri train station. And there I meet this young woman living in Jakarta, we start talking and we don’t stop. We decide to have lunch together and we continue talking. We have lots in common even though there is 35 years ago difference. I am so lucky to have met so many nice people.

Yes, train to Yogyakarta, do I want to arrive 1 am or 4.30 am. But I have to buy from line 2. Ok, I’m not in a hurry. So I stand there for a long time and nothing happens. A policeman approached me (I’m wearing shorts, yes I know!!!!) He says What are you doing? While looking at my legs. Waiting to buy a ticket. To Where? Yogyakarta. Where will you buy it? Here in line 2. I gave him the humble smile all the time. He said Ok. I said Thank you.

Everybody are friendly, give me a smile and nod their heads, just as I do, in some sort of agreement that we are not enemies. Men more cautious than women. Understandable. But there are the police. Very young men with a lot of power. They know it, everybody knows it. Sometimes they step into situations as if to act judges, perhaps they do, sometimes I se them give people a ticket. People just bend their heads. Walk away. There is a odor of something I don’t feel comfortable with. I have never felt comfortable with people demanding their power. But today I only observe.

I get word that everybody got a refund from the hostel. I want that to.

Yes, and I have to thank the man on seat61.com for being so thorough. After I bought the ticket from the lady in the booth I have to go to the machine 4 meters away, scan the ticket and press Print to get the real one. I’ve done that now.

In two hours I will leave Jakarta, the city I have dreamed of but didn’t see. I can do that, because I am adult and pay my own bills, I can change my mind. And be very ok with that.

My new friend from earlier today and I, we talked about the power of being grateful for all the good we have. To be more focused on what we have than what we lack. Today I am happy and grateful for all the great people I have in my life. People who send messages, call, write letters, new acquaintances, old friends, new friends.

I love my adventure, I love that you are with me.

Today I have been honest with you about emotions, observations and bedbugs. Life.