Hati-Hati

Hati- Hati is what you say to someone in Indonesia upon saying goodbye. It translates in English as “be safe”.  It seems that the teachers at my school need to start heeding this advice. In the past three months 3 English teachers at my school have passed away in freak accidents. 2 were motorcycle accidents and the other guy fell off a 27 story building. Now, as you can imagine this kind of freaked me out a wee bit. I am a superstitious person, and this streak of bad luck left a bad taste in my mouth. I was considering buying a motorcycle to get to school and around the town for the next year because taxis are expensive-however I might play it safe and avoid motor vehicles while living here.  It is not that  I think mopeds are dangerous in general, it is just the way people drive and utilize them around here. It is a common sight to see a family of 5 on one moped zooming in and out of traffic. Hell-the other day I saw a women with her infant on her lap, and two kids seated behind her.  Traffic lights? Lines on the road? Forget about it. I don’t even know why they bother with them here because noone seems to pay attention. Regardless, they seem to get by.

I start my first official day of teaching tomorrow. I am a bit nervous because I have never worked with children over the age of 10 years old, and now  I am working with middle school and high school kids. I am sure things will work out fine, however older kids can be a bit of a pain. They tend to be sarcastic and “too cool for school”. Plus, I am working at a school that caters towards the children of wealthy Indonesian families and they have the tendency to be a bit bratty. I am going to miss teaching the small children who look up to me with sweet, smiling faces.

Another odd thing I encountered today was the face and body lotions they use here. In America, people are obsessed with being bronze. Our aisles are filled with self-tanners and spray on tan lotions. Here, all their face products and lotions have some sort of bleach to whiten your skin. Micheal Jackson would have fit in perfectly here- Haha bad joke. Now that I think about it, I remember during my interview the school asked me for a colored photograph before I was hired because they wanted to know how white my skin was. Talk about being politcally incorrect…..

I ate at my first Warung yesterday. This is what they call a traditional food stand on the street. I avoided the meat and ordered the tofu. It was really good, and more importantly really cheap. I ate for around one American dollar. There were rats running around the stand, but honestly, I have worked in the restaurant industry back home in the States for many years and every restaurant I worked in had rats and or roaches- From the Mexican food joint all the way to the fine dining establishment I served at.  On that note, I hope you enjoy your next dining experience back home in your developed country.

My first Warung experience in Indo

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Comments

  1. Summer Weber says:

    Brilliant idea on the blog! Looking forward to keeping up with you through it. Waaaayyy better than a status update. Love it.

    Hati-Hati,
    Summer

  2. You are sooo Anthony Bourdain!!! haha. I’m stoked you have a blog. I’m gonna check it out all the time. Please don’t ride any motorcycles. I’d be pretty superstitious too. I’ve seen photos of people in Asia on their bikes and all I can say is, “Wow. Freaking crazy.” I really wanna go visit you. It sounds amazing already. And thanks for the rat comment. Totally made my day. I can’t wait to go eat at a restaurant now knowing that Remy and his Ratatouille clan are cooking behind closed doors. 🙂 PEACE.

  3. JENNA. youre cracking me up. i totally remember the crazy driving there please do not get a moped. i honestly just do not trust you driving a moped.

    on that note, i think rats give food better flavor.

    love you and miss you lots!

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