Things I Take for Granted in Jakarta

Tonight was Satuday's Night. I was sitting all alone outside the coffee shop nearby, writing -and doesn't even drink coffee.
Three cups of them I have before were enough.
Suddenly I remember a statement written by Gretchen Rubin.
'The Days were long, and year are short.". 
It's been a year since I come to Jayapura.
It felt just like yesterday -really.
But when it come to Daily basis, it felt like forever.
Let's just be a honest here. After All.
I hate Jakarta so much and I decide to move on.
It might not be about the place, it's something else,
There are deeper reason why I hate the place where I born. 
When I took the job, I thought Surabaya will be nice,
Until the offer come.
I could move to Jayapura, took five hour and expensive flight from Jakarta to be there.
It's Fa(i)r enough for me to move there with a chance of coming back to civilization every month.
Without any hesitation, I decide to take the offer.
After a year, I begin to see things I take for granted in Jakarta.
Things that are unavailable in Jayapura, no matter how hard I try to find it.
They were friends, civilization, and.. ofcourse, Internet Connection.

There were many type of friends. I'm quite happy that in most of the places I have friends to hang out with. But when it comes to Friends-For-Life: the kind of friends who bear with me talking about Psychology, business, math, or even, the existential things with the open minded attitude... the numbers plummeted to zero in Jayapura. It took years to have those kind of friends in life. And I start to miss those days when people come to my coffee shop, talking about that non-sense things. A little things that I take for granted. I never thought, that a deep face-to-face conversation that sharpening my mind will be really scarce.  I did try to talk about those things with friends I have in Jayapura, but ... really those capability to listen, to understand, and to be an open-minded person (especially) when talking with me is scarce. The intimacy just not there yet. And now, happiness reduce to the simple thing like: Meeting with friends in Jakarta who questioning things and sharpening my dull-mind. I appreciate more (a lot actually) friends who committed their time to have small chats over cup of coffee whenever I came back to Jakarta. Really, I love you guys, more than ever.

Shopping Malls. Oh I'm not a big fan of shopping mall. I can survive in a jungle but I can get lost in Grand Indonesia. Jakarta is the leading place for civilizations in term of availability -of almost anything. And Go-Jek things will be surprise how your life has been actually improved  since Go Jek in the market! But, it's not about the availability that I miss the most. It's about getting fairness. Once my boss said, "You need to adjust your behavior while living in Jayapura. Do not go alone!" as simple as "Do not go alone" means a lot in Jayapura. We have unwritten rules on curfew here. 

In Jakarta you have so much higher degree of freedom when you are doing things. That's what I called Civilization here. As human, you have the right to do things on your own.
When you are hungry, you can always get food anytime. When you want to have a Night Run, you can go to the gym or the closest public park from your home. When you want to do solo traveling, you can do it just fine in Indonesia except in Papua. Even my dear friend who have been traveling anywhere in Indonesia and living in Raja Ampat for a year, said "Uli, Jangan kemana-mana sendirian disana. Papua itu beda ya sama daerah Indonesia yang lain. Banyak 'red zone' disana. Lo perempuan.". I thought it was just a 'too much' advice, but hell, I prove it by myself when I want to go for trekking by myself. Traveling alone is not advisable, if you survive once, just considered you are lucky (-and obviously, you are not a woman). 

Have you ever wonder why? Because other places are more civilized, enjoy more civilized citizen who obey the law, the written law that we, Indonesian Citizen, respect. Yeah, I know even though in Jakarta criminals happens, but think of Jayapura, the probability it's happening to you will be tremendously increase. But, people who were born here and have been living years in Jayapura might be accustomed on how 'local rule' apply and adapted. Another thing about civilization sign is: Service.  Service Industry were reallllyyy lameee.. whenever you step into a nice international hotel, do not expect that it will have the same standard as in Jawa (Even though, it has the same brand!). The Industry just started to learn being nice to their customer, here, in Papua. You can't get angry even you have paid Rp. 1 Million /Night for a room and, suddenly you get a stink water coming out from your shower. However, the sign of development are here, I'm quite happy seeing the progress, but it will take a lot of efforts to teach 'how service is called service' here.

But for me, after a year? After reading a lot of psychology facts that environment did affect how you behave (even  proven from the ancient age), I start to wonder how I become if I live years in Jayapura. I start to learn about myself, and how I adapt to things, and I'm not the type who like being oppressed. Jakarta is not a great place to live either, hedonistic rules the city, people are getting deceived on how happiness should have been. But in term of Degree of Freedom for basic things, in term of getting things based on Value for Money:  Jakarta is much better. So, it's a thing I take for a granted earlier. Now, whenever I got back to Jakarta, sipping a nice coffee, getting a nice smile from receptionist, and a fast cashier on Hypermart: I know, I should be grateful on those things! Many people (even) in Jayapura can't have those thing.

Internet Connection.
Never complain if you are living in Jakarta about Internet speed which only hit 3G. Whenever there is an earthquake (and it's quite often)... people live in Jayapura are worried about the internet connection! The funny fact is.. people ask 'how the internet' prior the Earthquake Strength! Even in the capital city, the internet is up and down, and if you travel 2-3 hours outside the city... signals is barely there! So, Jakartan Never Complain about your goddamn Fast Internet Speed! And not to mention, we pay Internet higher here! 
In conclusion, I don't regret my decision. Papua after all is a tremendous place to learn. The local people are teaching me a lot of things. People are actually nice in more remote places. I love working for Papuan Farmers. And anyway, The tribe war are not happening all around the place. People are experiencing major economic growth, and they learn to live better,  I can feel it. It's an amazing opportunity to live here. It's almost feel like I'm living outside the country!

But hey, let's sum it up: it's time to move on!  


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