29-31 of August
Caution picture heavy
Arrival in Jakarta
Kyiv-Dubai-Jakarta. I spent 8 hours transiting in Dubai and felt extremely exhausted after arrival. When I was going to the hotel it was 1 am and the only thing I could see from the car was palm trees. I love palm trees, it reminds me about that Bounty advertisement of the perfect holidays in the tropical paradise. Oh and the second thing – the “rivers” on the road through which our car was trying to get to the hotel. What a rain!
I didn’t sleep 24 hours when I finally got to the hotel in Jakarta. “We will spend 2 more awesome days on the opening ceremony here! Yey! Have a rest and have fun” – I was cheering myself up after a long flight. But a minute after I got into the room one of coordinators announced: students from Telkom University your dean wants you to participate in the event at the University tomorrow morning. That meant we had to leave in 2 hours to get to Bandung in time.
Bandung – my home for the next year
Bandung is the third biggest city in Indonesia after Jakarta and Surabaya with population about 10 mln people. It’s about 5 hours away from the capital. Thanks god we don’t have to fly there like other participants who study in Bali or Sumatra. Bandung is well-known for it’s fashion outlets and good food from all over the country. And the weather is cooler that in most of other places in Indonesia, because it’s surrounded by mountains.
So here we are, tired, hungry and disappointed, when all the other 600 participants of Darmasiswa scholarship program are peacefully enjoying their sleep after long flights our Bandung group of 10 people are leaving the hotel and missing all the fun of 2 days opening ceremony.
We came to bandung at 6 am and they were taking us back and forth until we got to the hotel just for 3 hours to take shower and a short nap before the event starts. We slept for 2 hours and after that I felt totally like a zombie. Tired and aggressive. EPIC FAIL: they were opening new campus and they brought us there only as viewers. They even didn’t introduce us or anything. We just set there, eat and took pictures. OMG, all of us didn’t have any idea what the speakers were talking about. It’s in Bahasa Indonesia – Indonesian language. And most of us have never heard it before.
After the event we didn’t go to sleep. Oh no, we had more interesting things to do. We went to choose accommodation, that was previewed for us by ms. Yelly (I am very grateful for that). I the end we decided to stay in Kosan (rooms for rent) that was located 7 min from the campus and that meant 3 angkots (mini buses) and around 1,5 hours from the city centre. But we discovered all that only the next day. Kosan rental was 850k per month (85$).
Bandung – sightseeing
My first impression of Indonesia was very good because I was comparing everything with India, where I was volunteering 5 weeks the year before. In Indonesia everything was clean and developed :). People were incredibly unorganized but they were constantly smiling. Amine from Tunisia decided to change his tickets and go back home :D. Big stress for the guy who left his country for the first time.
Oh, who told me that Indonesia is tropical country and it’s hot and humid here? In Bandung the weather is totally different!
The next day we met with guys from couchsurfing and they took us to the punk concert. It was first punk concert in my life and it was amusing to see Indonesian punks :). Unfortunately all videos and pictures were on the phone that was stolen later in Jogjakarta.
After the concert we went to Ryan’s cafe – Java Cat. Just imagine, Rian spent 3 month in Lviv on internship from AIESEC, that’s the same time I went to India.
The next day in the evening we went to punclut – it’s a hill from where you can observe beautiful panorama of the 7 mln city.
The next day Ryan showed us the city. When you read Lonely Planet, it seems that they is beautiful colonial architecture in the centre of Bandung, particularly Braga street. I’m sorry, but I came from Eastern European city that was founded in 1256 and this colonial architecture by any means cannot be compared with what we have in Lviv. That’s one of my first insights – you don’t come to Indonesia for classical culture (like theatres) or architecture.
So what can you see sightseeing in Bandung?
Braga street – old buildings and expensive cafes, art galleries.
Big Mosque – Mesjit Raya – you can go up to the tower and see panorama of the city.
This was my first impression from Indonesia and Bandung, the city where I would spend the next year of my life.