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Posted Aug 15, '12 at 8:50pm

Jefferysinspiration

Jefferysinspiration

3,138 posts

Quite a few people on here asked me to create a thread and tell them about my year in Indonesia. I never got around to it and may be five weeks late on starting - but as promise here we go:

Anything you want to know, just ask away and i'll answer. The travel blog of amazing things I had planned has been shot out the window. Why you ask? I'm miserable, to an extent, and i'm not holding out for the entire year.

The move was kind of a major fail from the moment I left Ireland. My brother flew down with me, out suitcases got lost in Singapore, when we got through the door, there was a power-out. Big nightmare. My brother and my dad left a week after I landed and then the visa problems started. So the "I'm going to earn so much money and travel Asia" plan seriously went out the window.

So what have i been doing? I teach (illegally) at a public school. English, of course. Grades 7, 8 and 9. On Saturdays I tutor grades 4-7. In my spare time, I explore, look around.

Throughout the week, i'll dig out my journal and let you guys know what i've been doing the past five weeks and what I plan on doing for the next few months, so keep tuned and ask away.

 

Posted Aug 16, '12 at 8:12am

Jefferysinspiration

Jefferysinspiration

3,138 posts

For my first update, i thought i'd talk about work. People have been asking me what i've been doing.

I work in SMPN 1, A junior high in a town called Cibinong. This is a public/government school and yes, i'm working illegally. I don't get paid a lot but i absolutely love teaching here so that doesn't bother me.

http://koprol.zenfs.com/system/pictures/0118/7122/SMPNCIB2.jpg

Schooling here is such a contrast to Ireland. The kids love learning. I don't mean the occasional child, I mean all of them think education is the best thing ever. Learning English is tough, mainly in this type of school. Government schools usually don't teach English here - it's not always offered until high school, so when the kids graduate, they graduate with a very small vocabulary. I teach grades seven, eight and nine. My favourite grade is nine because they're more willing to participate and understand that making mistakes is okay.

The school is fairly good for public standard - every class has a whiteboard, a projector, a computer and AC. They also have science labs and ICT labs. For a public school in Indonesia, this is luxury.
Of course they still have their problems - there's days upon end where the power will be out. The kids don't mind it but i must admit i hate it not having AC when the temperatures around 36. It's a predominately Muslim school which offers a full mosque in the school grounds which is unique to me. Few Christians attend the school but the ones who do never look or feel out of place. My only issue with it being a Muslim school is covering up. As a teacher in Ireland you have to cover up, but long sleeve shirts and trousers in this heat can kill a girl.

On weekends i tutor grades 4+. This is usually more fun as it's just conversational English and doesn't require a textbook. That said, i try play as many English games in school as i can.

So that's what i'm doing when i'm earning some money. The fun stuff will come next.

 

Posted Aug 17, '12 at 8:04am

Jefferysinspiration

Jefferysinspiration

3,138 posts

I'm living in a city called Bogor, it's maybe an hours drive (with no traffic) outside of Jakarta.

http://anggavantyo.files.wordpress.com/2010/01/img_0008.jpg

Bogor is known as the "rain city" as it's quite tropical. We usually get a shower of rain every few days in the evening which makes the weather more bearable and the mossis less frequent. Bogor is famous for it's Presidential Palace and botanical gardens which are quite mindblowing.

http://***************.com/-cJP-cs7iQiA/TfH8f8PpzbI/AAAAAAAABaY/MydfvHYsC3A/s1600/istana+bgr.jpg

I like taking a walk down to the fences of the palace where there are hundreds of Deer roaming the place. You pay a street seller a small amount of money for some fresh vegetables and you can feed them, which is lovely.

https://fbcdn-sphotos-c-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/281965_226917617346248_331618_n.jpg

This is my house for my time spent here. Well, this is my fathers house. The big above the car port is an apartment where I stay.

That's my city for the next few months. My next post will be about Bandung - the best shopping place here.

 

Posted Aug 21, '12 at 3:58pm

Skeleton_Pilot

Skeleton_Pilot

1,290 posts

Let me guess... the man in the bottom picture is your father? Because I know he's not Indonesian...

 

Posted Aug 22, '12 at 1:28am

Jefferysinspiration

Jefferysinspiration

3,138 posts

Let me guess... the man in the bottom picture is your father? Because I know he's not Indonesian...

Aha, yes, that's my father. I think he's kill me if he knew i'd broadcast a picture of his moobs on the internet.

http://rossrightangle.files.wordpress.com/2012/02/istana-bogor.jpg

*Hopefully* ^ that works. Picfix.

Bandung

For anybody who loves shopping and decides to take a trip to Java. Bandung is a must. I mean this place is like a frenzy. The streets are lined with shopping outlets where you get real and seriously cheap designer clothes. I don't want to write too much or get too girly, but i mean this place is fab. And they have a superhero mall where all the shops are characters :

http://www.itravelnet.com/photos/as/indonesia/bandung/superhero-store.jpg

http://blog.gotravelindonesia.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/08/gtibp-ban-jeanst1C.gif

Best shop fronts. Ever. [Ripped off the internet by the way].

This isn't supposed to be a good reading/travel thread. Sorry. This is because 10+ people asked me to post what i've been up to, ha.

One of the reasons I like it here is due to the total contrast from Ireland. I went to the bar and then got some food the other night. My friend was driving me home and we stumbled into a demonstration. These kids were from a high school, preaching for Ramadhan. They literally took over the main road with banners and chanting and not to mention fireworks. They lit fireworks all over the show and it was really a blast. Can't beat school, religious and community spirit from a bunch of kids at 2:30am.

https://fbcdn-photos-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/304933_418558961515445_1985025501_a.jpg

 

Posted Aug 24, '12 at 1:38pm

Jefferysinspiration

Jefferysinspiration

3,138 posts

Those of you who have me on facebook or who have picked up on what's been happening here - This post is on the deportation saga.

I applied for a job and got it, which was amazing. Went in to meet everyone and start my visa process. Found out i was too young for the visa (Surely i should have been told this beforehand) and the only way i could obtain it was with a pretty big bribe which kind of wasn't worth it. I opted out and decided to work illegally on my tourist visa. (Not recommended). In a way i'm glad because i'm going home in a couple of months and it's what i want. This gap year was supposed to be about figuring out what i want to do with my life and where i want to do it. After my first proper teaching job i've decided it is indeed the career i want to pursue, although not EFL - Religion. So i travelled all the way here to go back to my original life goal, wahey.

So basically immigration made me leave the country and pay a fine because i'd overstayed my visa. Now everything in Indonesia is corrupt, it's not like you get asked to leave and not come back. I had a few options - either fly away for the day to Singapore or Malaysia and land back in Indonesia and purchase another 30 day Visa On Arrival. But that seemed like hassle, so i decided to go for a 60 day visa, to be picked up in Singapore and which is extendable up to four times, 30 days each time. So that suits.

Firstly, the immigration office in Jakarta gave me the wrong papers, asked me to come back three days in a row to pick up the correct ones. Their computer system had an error and they couldn't give them to me. So off to Singapore i flew with no immigration papers. They told me they'd email me them. The following day, no sign, which meant i couldn't meet the agent who was helping me obtain the visa in a few hours (as opposed to the 2-3 day waiting time) and i had to cancel my flight and book another night in a hostel. Day two, still no papers, despite my Stepmum driving to Jakarta immigration and demanding them, so another night in a hotel. Third day, finally the were able to fa them to me and last submission is 11am, i made it to the embassy at 10:45, met the agent, paid him, and had a few hours to chill. I was told to pick my passport/visa up at 3pm and my flight back to Jakarta was at 7pm. 3pm, no sign. 3:30pm, no sign. 4pm, no sign. Just after 4:30 the agent comes out and informs me that immigration had printed the wrong visa for me, hence the delay. I now have to bolt to the tram station and hop on, making it to the airport, through check-in/security and run to the gate with five minutes to spare and the huge red, flashing "FLIGHT CLOSING" "LAST CALL". Phew, but i made it and i got my visa in the end.

Plus, i've been to Singapore a few times and it's up there in my favourite country list. Why? Because it is breathtakingly beautiful.

https://fbcdn-photos-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/297398_418192301552111_1371694844_a.jpg

The Singapore Flyer is magnificent.

https://fbcdn-sphotos-a-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/418878_418192358218772_239794461_n.jpg

https://fbcdn-sphotos-b-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/482037_418192414885433_522927064_n.jpg

They have just opened the new Gardens By The Bay down at the Marina, and they are incredible. I didn't go in and walk around because i didn't have the time, but i might take a trip over before i head home.

https://fbcdn-sphotos-h-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-ash3/561934_418192694885405_296815458_n.jpg

If you ever go to Singapore you have to go to the Marina, and you HAVE to go to the shoppes at Marina Bay. This mall is insane. It has an ice rink and a boat canal inside it.

https://fbcdn-sphotos-h-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-ash3/542485_418192874885387_1484189937_n.jpg

Take in some of the beautiful surroundings,

https://fbcdn-sphotos-a-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/431140_418192961552045_285516249_n.jpg

If you get a chance, go up on the skywalk,

https://fbcdn-sphotos-h-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/582794_418193001552041_1242008607_n.jpg

At least look at the art science museum.

https://fbcdn-sphotos-b-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/269669_418191194885555_238720866_n.jpg

& Go to China Town and Little India.

Despite being kicked out and having a stress ball of a time, Singapores beautiful and definitely worth visiting. I wish i had of got some shots at night for you guys because it's even more beautiful then.

 

Posted Aug 25, '12 at 2:58am

Skeleton_Pilot

Skeleton_Pilot

1,290 posts

Wow, Singapore has some very beautiful architecture!

But come on, there have got to be much more fun ways to get yourself kicked out of Indonesia than overstaying your Visa...

 

Posted Aug 28, '12 at 9:29am

Jefferysinspiration

Jefferysinspiration

3,138 posts

But come on, there have got to be much more fun ways to get yourself kicked out of Indonesia than overstaying your Visa...

In Java, you can pretty much get away with anything if you have money. I guess the crime they take most seriously is drug smuggling which will lead to your death - yikes, but i mean i've seen people be caught with weed (personal use) and just pay off the police. The police aren't fussed about laws being enforced if they can tap the person for a bribe.

I'm glad you mentioned it though, because the whole law side of things is what this entry will be on.

Indonesias roads are, somewhat hilarious.

http://www.asianews.it/files/img/INDONESIA_-_jakarta_e_traffico_ok.jpg

The motorways aren't so bad - the motorway linking my city to the capital actually has lines separating lanes, which is a shocker. You see, people just drive anywhere. There doesn't seem to be a right side of the road, no lanes separating, and the traffic, my God, the traffic. Everyone can afford a motorbike or scooter because you can pay them off monthly. Everyone seems to be in a rush so the traffic is always weaving and dangerous.

My first time sitting behind the drivers wheel was a few weeks ago, my friend took me out to finally learn how to drive. I was scared for ages to start but i'm glad i did. Within fifteen minutes i was speeding down the main road. I didn't get stopped but it wouldn't have mattered if i did. Why?

- Most people here buy their license without having to pass any test.
- You can pay a set amount for not having a license.
- You can pay a smaller amount for speeding.

Gambling is illegal here, yet i see bets on **** fights every week. Not to mention my city likes to re-enact the fast and the furious movies and close down the main road in the early hours of a saturday morning for street racing. (Which the police block off for them, since they're given a tip). I mean, the penalty for masturbation is decapitation. (Sorry, i know PG13, but this is ridiculous). This law brings a lot into question - how the heck would you get caught? Also, it's not "indecent exposure", it's explicitly pleasuring yourself: peeing in the streets is fine, but god forbid you drop the hand in your bedroom.

You'd think with this lack of restriction i'd be going mental, but no, so far the only crazy "law-breaking" things i've done is drive without a license, speed, do a u-turn where i wasn't suppose to, drink in a pub during Ramadhan and overstay my visa.

 

Posted Sep 12, '12 at 2:12am

Jefferysinspiration

Jefferysinspiration

3,138 posts

I thought i'd make a final post on this with a little update.

The reason i haven't been updating with what i've been doing during my gap year is because things have got rather messy with my family and i'm bailing back to Ireland.

I leave in the morning, thank god and have 34 hours travelling to do before i reach home. I'm a little upset to be leaving my amazing job and the amazing kids i teach here, but too excited and happy to get home to my family and friends.

Going to ask for this to be locked, so if you have any questions since i covered basically nothing on this, hit me up.