Saturday, May 14, 2005


Again and again I went by Busway along Sudirman-Thamrin in Jakarta. I saw that the driver, the gate guards, and of course the passengers can diciplinize themselves, in contrary with one public opinion that Indonesian will never be able to act in order, instead they should more likely to act "semau gue" ("according to my desire").
But it doesn't happen in Busway. The construction is designed in the way so that the pasenger should buy first the ticket, then insert the ticket to the ticket machine, which allow him to pass and wait until the bus comes. There is no prompt stop outside the stops and no people overrides the system. Everything run well.
I think we should appreciate Governor Sutiyoso for his intiative. I can say this is the only success he has made in Jakarta :-) unless he could remake his corrupt and untransparent bureacracy.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005


Yesterday an Indonesian TV station aired a classical film, Sound of Music (1965). I think the most touchy song in this film is Edelweiss, which was sung by Captain von Trapp:

Edelweiss, edelweiss,
every morning you greet mesmall and white,
clean and bright,
you look happy to meet meblossom of snow may you bloom and grow,
bloom and grow forever
edelweiss, edelweiss, bless my home-land forever

The scene was around the time when Austria "joined" Germany's Hitler in 1938. This song shows the Captain's resistance to the Nazis. Ironically Hitler was born in 1889 in Linz, Austria, he was actually Austrian, served as a German soldier in World War I and became very nationalistic, even when compared to the German themselves. He lead the Nazi party, won the election in 1933 and with brutality seized all power to himself. He brought Germany and the world to World War II, and brought also Germany to ruins in 1945.
Every nation, even every person in this world, has a dark side which is enough to think about.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

"Jangan Berdiri Dekat Pintu"

My favourite public transportation in Jakarta is Trans Jakarta Busway. For the first time a Jakarta bus service can afford a cheap and reliable transportation, although it is very limited between Blok-M and Kota.
A small instruction in the bus caught my eyes. It says "Jangan Berdiri Dekat Pintu" (Don't stand close the door). I think it is quite different with what I saw in Germany. In the S-Bahn there written something like "Don't stand in front of the yellow line", which is more clear with the yellow line. Does it have something to do with Indonesian way of thinking, which sometimes avoids clear definitions and very "flexible" indeed?