Been in Jakarta for about 3 weeks already, as I was assigned to help out our market here. Jakarta is soooo like Manila. With is early morning traffic jam, the pollution coming from cars, motorcycles and a few rickety buses. There are back-alleys that you never knew where it leads, but your driver is confident that he could bring you to your office just in time.
I am housed in Golden Town Residence, though it sounds like a seniors' home, most of my co-tenants are actually young, mobile urban workers either Filipino expats or managers of companies in jakarta, who are either assigned here in the city or too lazy to brave the traffic jams everyday to their homes in the suburbs.
Going to my place, one has to pass through narrow alley and backways. When i first arrived, i was actually scared where the driver was taking me. I thought, "oh no. This looks like a place that i wouldn't dare venture outside." But then, somewhere along the way, we went inside a gated-place, and my home-away from home came appear out of nowhere.
Its actually a 3storey condo-like structure, with the rooms facing a nice garden cum parking lots, with just the right amount of green to relax the eyes. My room is the first door from the foyer to the right. Stragetic. Near the kitchen, near the nice little fountain. But i can't look at the gate from my window or door though, as my view is obstructed by tall plants. It's ok.
The place is a one-room pad, with its own toilet/ bath, ample closet, TV with cable, fridge, and the company is generous enough to bring me microwave. As I don't really dig carrying laptop in my travels, they also lend me a laptop so i can chat with my kids.
There are several Filipinos who lives there, and are working for a company that services Nokia. Most of them electronic engineers who are building nokia's 3g network in Indonesia. Its so heartwarming that at the end of the day, I can swear and talk about their and my work, in Filipino language. Most of them are seasoned Overseas contract workers. Paul has been to Pakistan, Iraq, Afghanistan, among others. Ricky has worked in Saudi. They've worked together in Bangladesh.
And so, everyday, this is my home for the next 2months. Home sweet home.