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What’s in A Name? Februari 27, 2008

Posted by finallywoken in Being Expat.
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I have received an email from an Indonesian lady who recently has just got married to a Scotsman. She was asking me, referring to my post in my original blog (What’s in A Name?), if I successfully add my new last name, officially, in formal documents, like passport or any other IDs.

But before that, it’s a good thing to ensure that her marriage is legal in both countries – UK and Indonesia.

(lebih…)

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Living in A Foreign Country… Is It Always Better? Februari 26, 2008

Posted by finallywoken in Being Expat.
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This article was originally posted in Finally Woken on 29 October 2007.

I received an email from my friend the other day. She’s one of the few Indonesians who could hop on the plane and fly to the US when she’s fed up with what she’s encountered. Which means 1) she has money, 2) she has passport, and 3) most importantly, she has her visa ready. Nevertheless, she said that she’s so jealous to find out that I’ve been living outside Indonesia for several months now. She said that I’m so lucky, and is sure that I’m having a good time. That I must be relieved to get out Indonesia, or Jakarta in particular.

This is not the first time I received such comments. Several friends commented the same thing. Some even said I’m not meant to be living in Indonesia, that I’m better off somewhere else. Funnily enough, only my colleagues in L’Or√©al reacted differently (when I said Scotland, they looked at me like I was out of my mind and said, “It’s really cold up there!”. Which means they know exactly where Scotland is – a plus point because most of Indonesians don’t). In general, the reactions I’ve received so far is a mixture of amazement and jealousy, that I finally can get out of Indonesia.

Really? Is it true that everything is better outside Indonesia?

(lebih…)

Where is Scotland? Februari 26, 2008

Posted by finallywoken in Scotland.
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This article was originally posted in Finally Woken on 14 October 2006.

Everywhere I go, when asked where I come from and I said Indonesia, I usually get another question: “Indonesia? Where is it?”. Doesn’t matter that we are one of the largest countries in the world, we have almost 14,000 islands and almost 400 languages, that we have the second biggest rain forest in the world (after Amazon), we must admit, Indonesia is so poorly advertise themselves people don’t know that we exist! Ok, most of them know Bali, but sadly they never have a clue that Bali is a just small part of Indonesia. Maybe now we are more famous because of the terrorist attack (ouch…) but compare to our neighbor who claims that they are “Truly Asia”, although they claim so many things that belong to Indonesians (i.e. satay, batik and tempe), we are far behind them.

So it’s funny to see that most of the people in Indonesia don’t know where Scotland is. The first time I met Stuart, when he said he’s from Scotland, I assumed it’s somewhere in UK. I was correct, but it’s just the same thing by saying Bali is Indonesia.

(lebih…)

Greetings from Legazpi City Februari 19, 2008

Posted by Jun in Uncategorized.
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legaspi.jpg

I arrived in Legazpi City ten days ago. It is the capital of province of Albay, southern tip of Luzon, Philippines. I am here as my husband is here. He is posted as a part of emergency relief to build houses for people who lost theirs from the typhoon attack a couple of years ago. I will only be here for a month or so since he is leaving in April too.

It is a very small city with population only less than 200,000. The terrain is hilly and the weather is nice. The Mayon is the volcano overshadowing the city. It is practically surrounded by hills.

It is a pretty little city with low rise houses and a lot of greenery – I suspect the earth is very fertile because of the mineral traces from the volcanic ashes. From the first glance of the map, I was thrilled that because it is a coastal town, there must be beautiful beaches in the bay area. Yeah it’s not. The whole coast is barricaded by sea wall. The resorts build small stairs for tourists who wants to take a dip or a swim. But it’s not really beach vacation I had in mind.

(lebih…)