ONE NIGHT IN JAKARTA

What would you do if you have twenty-four hours to spend in Jakarta?  I had to answer this recently for a visiting friend.

I’ve known Mike for almost two decades now, we met at a small advertising agency where we both had our first jobs. We eventually  left the company and have not seen each other since, he moved to Dubai while I took on two more jobs before I got based here in Jakarta.  Last week, Mike took an Indonesian holiday and went to the famous Bali and Borobudur.  And even if Jakarta is not exactly a popular tourist destination, he extended his stay to the city just to see me.  Well, he sort of didn’t have a choice after my constant  F.O. (Friendship Over) threats. Never mind if it was only an overnight stay, just having someone around thrilled me big time.

I met up with him after I dropped the Little Boy to school and Dear Hubby to his office on Thursday morning.  It was nonstop chatter and laughter since then. Here’s what we did for the next twenty-four hours:

LUNCH AT KOI KEMANG
Koi is a chic restaurant in the Kemang area, South of Jakarta.  Aside from its great food and ambiance, Koi is conveniently located near the Little Boy’s school. This made us maximize our brunch time and saved us travel time when we did our school pick-up later on.

SCHOOL PICK-UP
Yes, Mike obliged to accompany me to my mommy duties and sat through Little Boy’s soccer trial that afternoon.  We laughed at how we never imagined we’d be babysitting a child together eighteen years ago.

Goofing around after school

A brief timeout from all the chatter

DINNER AT FOOD LOUVER, GRAND INDONESIA
My first restaurant of choice for dinner was at Social House but there was an ongoing event that night and they couldn’t accept table reservations.  We went to Grand Indonesia’s food court, The Food Louver,  instead which had elegant interiors that’s unlikely of a regular food court in a Philippine mall. Since Mike is into design, he appreciated the design details and found it interesting.

The entrance to the food court

The hallway that leads to the food stalls

Hand wash area

And the food selection begins

Wall art

The eating area that’s been witness to our juicy stories that night

DRINKS AT SOCIAL HOUSE

Dear Hubby met up with us later on that evening.  We went back to Social House (the event was done by that time) so he could have dinner while Mike and I have some drinks.  There were more catching up stories between Mike and the Hubby.  I went to bed that night exhausted from all the talking but couldn’t wait ’til morning for our next chika session.

The vast selection of wines at Social House

MORNING SKYPE

Pardon the poor photo quality but this was the highlight of the day

The next morning, Dear Hubby was kind enough to bring the Little Boy to school so I could spend time with Mike who’s leaving after lunch. We just stayed at home and Skyped with another good friend, Jurizz.  She worked with us in the same company and is now based in New York. It was a R-I-O-T, just like the old times!  I swear I can’t remember when I last laughed that hard, the kind that makes you tear a little and hurts your rib cage.  It was an entire morning of laughter, banter and reminiscing.  Too bad we had to say our goodbyes as Mike had to catch his flight and Jurizz had to put her kids to sleep.

Aahh, I miss my friends! I miss being crazy with them.  I love how we haven’t seen each other in a long time and things haven’t changed.  Thank you, Jurizz (and husband Oliver), for staying up late to chat with us.  Thank you, Mike, for including Jakarta in your itinerary, even for just one night.

***

Directory:

KOI KEMANG
Jl. Kemang Raya No 72 – Jakarta Selatan
Phone +62 21 719 5668,
kemang@koiindonesia.com
next to Pertamina Petrol Station

FOOD LOUVER
Grand Indonesia Shopping Town,
Sky Bridge, 3rd Floor (Jalan Mohammad Husni Thamrin No. 1),
Jakarta Pusat, DKI Jakarta 10310, Indonesia

SOCIAL HOUSE
Grand Indonesia East Mall
Jl. M.H. Thamrin No.1
Jakarta, Indonesia 10320
Phone +6221 235 81818; +6281 3877 02008
info@ismayagroup.com

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MOMMA’S MOJO

Don’t get me wrong, I’m really digging this motherhood gig and loving every second I spend with the fam but a little respite from nursery rhymes would be a good break, don’t you think? It’s been afternoon play dates and kiddie parties for me for some time and I’m sort of missing the night life.  My previous job would often take me to grand product launch events with unlimited booze, a staple when working for the biggest beer manufacturer in the Philippines.

Last Saturday, Dear Hubby and I got invited to his client’s product launch party.  Can you believe that?  I’m going to a partaaayy! *happy dance* 🙂  We took our dear family friend, Anna Mae, who was game enough to join us despite having arrived from an out of town trip that evening. Oh the energy of the youth!

Prepping for this party felt like going back on the dating scene after being single for a long time.  What shall I wear?  Do I have the shoes to match it? Which lipstick shade is perfect?  What about the blings?  Shoot, my nails are too short for a manicure! Aahh, I miss these girly problems!

I giddily rummaged through my closet to look for one of my prized possessions.  And there it is, underneath my school-friendly mommy clothes is my little black tube blouse! This little piece of clothing my friend gave me when we were still in Manila, and the very same one which I never got to wear since we moved to Jakarta two years ago is finally going to party.  I also took out my chandelier earrings which I have worn only once, and my Steve Madden killer heels which all of a sudden felt uncomfortable. I must’ve been wearing my Chuck Taylors and Crocs for far too long.  And of course, my most favorite part of any party prep: THE MAKE-UP.  I remember Dear Hubby’s funny reaction a long time ago when he learned that there are about a hundred shades of lipsticks for us to choose from.  He thought that it was just “red” and “pink” not knowing that RED could mean Russian red, brick red, rogue, ruby, crimson, etc. and PINK could be cotton candy, bubblegum, orchid, carnation and so on.  See baby, I don’t need to be an artist like you to know the color palette.

We had a blast at the party, never mind if I had to be assisted like an invalid at some point to prevent me from toppling over in my high heels. Darn, the Chucks would’ve been the better choice!  Judging from the other events and the bars I’ve been to in Jakarta so far, I must say that the Indonesians know how to party.  This one was no different, it was fun as usual. The SILENT DISCOwhich I just learned is very popular in Europe and the US was a novelty for me!

Here are some of the photos from the event.

The venue (Plaza Barat Senayan) is an open field but they built a dome so the party would have both outdoor and indoor areas.

Data base gathering

The DJ’s booth

Checking out the SILENT DISCO

“Silent disco has become a common name for a disco where people dance to music listened to on wireless headphones.  Rather than using a speaker system, music is broadcast via an FM-transmitter with the signal being picked up by wireless headphone receivers worn by the participants…” – Wikipedia

The touch-screen wall that showed our photo (taken earlier at the photo booth) after we “blast” those green balls.

Their version of ICED DRINK

Cheers to a balanced family and social life!!!

HANGING UP MY APRON… FOR NOW

Mommy duties have pretty much kept me from joining members of the  human race for some chit chat and updating The Domestic Diva Diaries.  I have been preoccupied with housework these past few months and the Little Boy has just started attending the big school (primary level).

Primary school starts at an earlier time than in Kindergarten and is located much farther from our place.  This means waking up much earlier to prepare breakfast, school snacks and lunch then head out to bring Little Boy to school and brave the infamous Jakarta traffic – the very same awful traffic that I encounter during school pick up in the afternoon.  With the exception of the twice-a-week visit from the cleaning lady, I’m rockin’ the whole cleaning, washing and scrubbing gig.

We finally got a full-time all-around helper last week, my angel!  Although we’re aware that this would just be temporary as maids in Jakarta have a standard “shelf life” of three months based on our experience (this would be another story), we are bent on enjoying its benefits.  I’ve finally had a loooong uninterrupted shower, went to the salon and booked a home massage.  Dear Hubby and I have attended dinner gatherings and a movie date (yes!) in the past week.  It was refreshing for me to be in the company of adults having adult conversations once again!

With last week’s arrival of the new help and Little Boy’s term break this week, they signal the start of squeezing in some “me” time re-connecting with friends,   updating blog entries and going back to the gym.  I’m not exactly taking my hands off from keeping my house and I would still personally attend to Little Boy and Dear Hubby’s needs but I gotta hang up this apron for now and get my nails done.

My “tools of the trade” which I have relinquished to my new angel

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