Big Durian Pt III: Macet

Big Durian Excursion [12 – 14 Dec 2010]
Pt I: Braving Lion Air
Pt II: It’s a Rich Man’s World
Pt III: Macet
Pt IV: Congkak & Pins
Pt V: Shitty Business
Pt VI: The Ride Home

Despite the following day being a working day, Jones and Jony still dropped us off at our hotel.

We were staying at Formule1 Cikini, an Accor property located in Menteng.

The area’s most famous son happens to be Barack Obama who lived here between 1967 and 1971.

Our abode was evidently more humble compared to the areas that we had visited earlier.

A 24 hour convenience shop, a restaurant and a Black Canyon Coffee House were attached to the hotel.

Clearly it wasn’t Ritz but at least we had a pool view.

Although I never get to figure out how to access it during the stay here.

Our triple room was unique as there was an additional bunk bed on top of the usual double.

The en-suite bathroom was small but adequate.

During the booking process the Accor website kept showing that no triples were available.

An e-mail directly to the hotel resolved the problem and a quote was generated.

Triple costs 420,000 IDR nett per night while double is 365,000 IDR.

Since breakfast weren’t included, we decided to make do with what was being offered on Jln. Cikini Raya the next morning.

Bakso (7,000 IDR per bowl), begedil (3,500 IDR each) and Indomie with chicken and lots of MSG (7,000 IDR per bowl) were our introduction to Jakarta’s street food.

Of course they weren’t gourmet stuff but were filling enough to sustain us until the next meal.

The reception helped to get us a Tiara Express cab to ferry the five of us to Taman Mini Indonesia Indah (TMII, entrance 9,000 IDR per pax).

The 30 minute ride was in a comfortable Toyota Alphard and cost almost 150,000 IDR.

Not knowing where to go we accidentally trespassed Museum Indonesia without paying.

It has a distinctive Balinese architecture.

Despite being one of the more popular attractions in Jakarta, it was rather deserted.

Apparently the locals know something that we don’t until we found out from the cute receptionist at the information counter that some of the pavilions are closed on Mondays.

It was definitely easier to travel with someone who speak the local lingo.

Then we decided to check out the timings at Keong Emas IMAX Theater and found out that we were too early for the next one.

Thus we decided to have our second breakfast (or first lunch) at KFC’s pirated cousin CFC.

The chicken was dry, miserably small and definitely not value-for-rupiah.

The only positive was finding out that fast food chains in Indonesia substitute chips/fries with rice.

A return to the IMAX Theater revealed that the films were in Indonesian.

So instead of spending 40 minutes pretending to understand Indonesian we invested the 30,000 IDR on bumping one another (bumper car: 10,000 IDR for 5 min) and riding the dodgy-looking cable-car (20,000 IDR per pax).

One could only appreciate the size of the park from the top.

There is a lake within the park and in the middle of the lake a replica of Indonesian islands are re-created.

Most of the buildings were visible from the cable car as well.

At the end of the cable car ride we decided that we had enough of TMII and chose to head back to town.

Little did we know that we would be stuck in Jakarta’s notorious macet (traffic jam).


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