Checking in. And, this week’s Crush.




Seemed a bit…ironic, to say the least.







3



The anticipation and the stress was over; I was happy and relieved for my friends that they were now finished with wedding anxiety!  Now, it was time to just kick it.  All of us.  We had had a bit of luxury for a couple days surrounding the wedding.  We went to a particularly strange yet familiar spot, a nail salon at one of Jakarta’s mega malls, and foot massages to boot.  We quickly learned that a manicure and pedicure does not include nail polish, but are 10,000 rupiah extra.  (Or 1,000 rupiah per nail.)

The foot massages were something interesting.  You walk in, and neon lights and glossy white seating lounges remind you more of a Hollywood nightclub than a spa.  You are escorted to a back area where there are rows upon rows of lazy boy sofa chairs, complete with dark lighting and individual TV screens.

We checked out of the four star hotel which hosted us for a couple days (and fed us some glorious breakfasts) and got out of the city.  I had tried some thick, pulpy avocado juice at the restaurant across the street from our hotel.  But it was time to take a break from the city.  (And away from the transvestite hookers that tapped on our car windows in traffic.  Yeah.  It was an unexpected experience.)

A break from the vendors peddling their wares on bustling marketplaces sprawled out street-side.  They had reminded me of the scene lining the roads en route from Tijuana back to Los Angeles.

My friends, the lovely couple (now married twice, once in Barcelona last year and most recently in Indonesia), along with a family friend of the groom, Dani, and I all got into the car and headed off to the beaches of Anyer for a couple days.  We take a short break at a convenience store carrying a bunch of snacks and various produce, including durian, the native local fruit known for its offensive odoriferous qualities.  After stopping by the massive resort complex of Marbella, we took a look at the private little bungalows on a more secluded end of the beach, at the Kompas hotel.  I was weary, so we took a look inside, but then ultimately decided to crash at the tucked away enclave.  My nose starts bleeding.  The past few days of flying, getting around town, drastic climate change, and wedding hoopla had caught up with me.  Good thing it was time for R+R.  Two nights, our own private bungalow on the beach.  We ordered breakfasts on both mornings and dinner for one evening.  The damage?  Let’s see here…

Grand total: 1.07 million rupiah for four people, for two nights.  So that’s about..$124 total, then…about $31 per person.  That means our little vacay in Anyer cost about $15.50 per person, per night.

I gotta go to Indonesia again.  Maybe Bali next time around.

I bought a pair of flip flops when we were out taking a walk around the neighborhood.  They were 10,000 rupiah – about $1.  I got a henna tattoo for another 10,000.  We ventured out along the beach, scaling some rocky embankments and dodging the tiny little grey crabs that scurried across the sand.  I was not a fan of the camouflaged creatures – you can hardly see them until they’re moving and seconds away from your bare feet.  I tried not to look down after awhile.  There were dozens of bungalows scattered, further up along the beach.  I remember seeing similar bungalows throughout Java, men and women leaving their shoes on the grass as they sat and chatted on the wooden platforms of the bungalow.

Hang on – give us a minute.  Putting on my bug repellent lotion.  And aloe vera on the existing offenses.  There’s even a big, red blotch on my face.  Ultimate insult by a mosquito, if any.  The truth is, I don’t care as much as I thought I would.

People often eat with their bare hands in Indonesia, and no one throws their food away.  I observe numerous meals where not a single grain of rice was left untouched.


COTW [crush-of-the-week]

  • Boys cooking in the kitchen (see above). Ladies love this, truth be told.  Just talking about what your specialty is in the culinary world is an unbelievably powerful babe magnet.  Serve with care.

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