Monday, August 29, 2005

That fountain of bravery, well spring of truth, handful of hope...Ok Just kidding. The local English Rag " the Jakarta Post" is a must read for anyone traveling through SE Asia. Never a day goes by without us choking and wiping away tears of .......

today's (29 Aug 05) gem, page two "Govt won't prosecute Muslim hard liners over church closures" Minister for Religious Affairs M.Maftuh Basyuni said "We will do nothing. We will only clarify there were no church closures" he went onto say the groups closed down illegal congregations (sic) set up in residential areas because they had " created anxiety among the local residents"

Wow, as visitors to this country there seems so much wrong here its hard to know where to start.

As we continue down the streets of Jakarta, watching other groups of thugs extort money from the "pedicab drivers" and "bemo" drivers the following questions spring to mind:

1. What due process was followed before these so called "illegal congregations" were shut down?
2. Who appointed the Anti Apostasy Movement Alliance legal law enforcers and who is responsible for their actions?
3. What "local residents" complained and to which government department?
4. If the Indonesian Constitution guarantees religious freedom then is the forcible prevention of people performing their religious obligations treason?
5. What is the role of the police in this country?

Of course then there is our driver Wayan, a Hindu living and working in Jakarta. We asked him if the "Call to prayer" played over loud speakers five times a day every day for the Muslim faithful made him feel anxious? He answered "of course, its a lot worse now than in the past, lots of orang gila now" Would he complain and ask to have the Mosques crediting checked? Wayan answered "Kamu Gila (You Crazy)!"

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

With due apologies to Iron Maiden but why on Earth did you use a QANTAS Training Manual Cover for your ablum


We have uprooted the stump again and have replanted in Jakarta, Indonesia for a while, so its down to the market to do some shopping (see the picture). Three questions:

1. What is horrid pimply thing that smells so bad (not davo)?

2. Why does everyone assume we need a girl?

3. Where is the blue sky and sun?

Seriously, just arrived via the Jakarta International (?) Airport flying the mangy roo (QANTAS). If there is an award for the most arrogant airline staff in the world, QANTAS have it in the bag.

Lady requesting assistance to place her bag in the overhead locker; QANTAS Hostie (yes you are bloody hosties skip the PC crap) in a snide remark to her mate " if its that heavy she should have checked it as luggage.

No my little darling you should have "checked your attitude" before you came to work.

The "Stump" agrees its time to sell the shares in the mangy roo, its only a matter of time before the political bias for QANTAS drys up (particularly now Minister for QANTAS freebies Anderson has gone) and Singapore Airlines moves into Australia.

Once SQ moves in, the days of the roo feasting in the long paddock are over. I guess QANTAS beer bitches and beastie boys will have to find work in french restaurants around the world, so they can still be rude to people and get paid for it.

While we are on the subject, the lads at the stump have discussed and awarded the following green tinnie awards (out of 12 because that how the tinnies come)

Singapore Airlines = 9/12 Kinda Sterile but Great Service, Great planes with all the extras. Special Note: How do the girls get into those uniforms? No bull and crap PC here!The girls look great and do a great job.

Malaysian Airlines = 8/12 A poor mans Singapore but still great service.

Garuda Airlines = 6/10 Well ok, they are never on time, your seat is cancelled if somebody more important (?) comes along, they run out of the most inept airports in South East Asia but hey the staff smile (even when they tell you your luggage has been used as whell chock. However at the end of the day they put the adventure back into flying

Merparti Airlines = 5/10 As for Guruda but with worse planes and less money don't be surprised if the plane is delayed to wait for more passengers to pay for the fuel.

SAS = 7/10 Smooth, professional and friendly something like a swiss clock I guess but they do seem to care.

QANTAS = 2/10 Arrogant, but come fully equiped with hags and pillow biters but coz we are Australians we will give them a point for the Kangaroo on the side. Oops we had to take the point back off, Davo just reminded us of that ghastly, vomitous Aborginal (Koori?)Art thingy that covers a whole plane. Did we lose a bet or something to have to fly that around the world?

Virgin = 6/10 Stingy, but lots fun to fly. Rumour has it all the pretty young things with a sense of humour are being replaced with the boilers again..sigh

Air North (NT) = 6/10 Expensive (make that gougers, Ned Kelly would blush working for these guys), saving grace the hosties are funny "Sit down!!!! In the history of this airline no one has even beaten a plane back to the terminal" or "If we should crash blow on the little whistle so the crocodiles know where to find you"

Thai = 7/10 Ok maybe more how thehell would we know we were looking at other things.

Emirates = 9/10 Actually no one has ever flown with them but they must great because the rumours say they are (you try and find someone who actually has?????)

Friday, August 12, 2005

Its that time of year again, where Indonesia sets fire to the rain forest (ok whats left of it)

Between the illegal mining, illegal timber cutting and rampant burning its a tough life being a jungle creature in Indonesia. One has to wonder how much longer the rest of the ASEAN community is going to tolerate its crazy, crooked, anti social dirty ol uncle who keeps spitting and urinating in the house.

Fair dinkum, if Indonesia was your neighbour in the suburbs, you would have to move. Not that you would get any resale on your house.

Monday, August 08, 2005

Hi There,

We are all back at the stump, licking our wounds and drying our tears (oops that aint true real men don't cry...maybe a little but only when we get the brylcream in our eyes)

As usual Jakarta was the bizarre mix of overt wealth and and abject poverty.. Took our vistors from the great south land for a night life tour .... BATS bar (named for location and patrons)
CJ's (how many people can you fit into one bar really) and of course BLOK M . General opinion from the stump ..BATS ..ok CJs...ok BLOK M ..just to damn sleazy. Couple of bars worth a mention Sportsman Bar not bad, nice food clean and not too many ladies...girls of the night. My Bar..not for most including us.

Gobsmack of the trip..." 10 year old kid kept trailing us for money until well past 1 am, "go home to your mother kid" Answer " mama di sana"( mum over there) pointing to a lady lying rags sleeping on a board on the footpath...

Ok so now how do we feel...