Monthly Archives: March 2013

“Hate the Attitudes, Not the Person”

That’s what my mother keeps saying. Sounds simple but it’s not easy.

I remember my friends said they disliked someone because of her obnoxious attitudes. That one particular attitude was so obnoxious that they could not appreciate another list of good qualities in her. Everything she said or did became irrelevantly wrong, all the time.

Recently, I’ve been noticing that some colleagues used to show their abundant affection towards our new governor and vice governor, because of the fact that they brought in new changes, possessed clean and discipline images, etc. But recently, when Governor Jokowi created a policy that created troubles for health care providers and when Vice Governor Ahok made a-not-very-wise public statement about doctors and hospitals, these colleagues of mine flew into rage and spread hate comments on social media.*

I understand that Jokowi’s new policy is somewhat premature and potentially creating problems within the health system. I understand that Ahok shouldn’t be signaling a statement that negatively labels doctors and hospitals: that they are not pro poor people and that they don’t give standard service. I too, must say that this is unbelievably disheartening.

It’s as if they’re, especially Ahok, (perhaps unintentionally) inviting people to hate the whole population of doctors and health providers in Indonesia.

I have always wondered what the joy people find in hating others is. As well as attacking others, hurting others, and watching others suffer.

I don’t want people to hate all of us. I don’t deny that doctors with bad attitudes exist and that they should be disciplined. Yet there are doctors who do good practices. Who treat patients for free. Who are not paid and sometimes even pay for the patients’ medication. Who work for a 36-hours sleepless shift because there are too many patients to take care for. Who put patients’ needs ahead of their own. Who get sued for malpractices and defamed because patients’ family, NGOs, and media don’t understand Steven Johnson Syndrome.

But I rarely find media mention these facts a lot. Sure thing, because good news don’t sell.

People can choose to hate the bad doctors. Or even more ideally, the attitude of those bad doctors. But please, just be wise and don’t hate everyone in a white coat.**

I don’t want to hate the whole person of Jokowi and Ahok either. I voted for them and I have a lot of hopes and respect for them. I love that they are hardworking, and smart, and down to earth, and strict to any violation of laws, and Ahok is cute (wait what).

So people may hate bad attitudes of several doctors and hope that those attitudes would be fixed. And doctors may hate Jokowi-Ahok’s actions towards this particular issue and hope that those actions would be fixed.

Just because there are sweetened cherries that you don’t like on top of your cake, doesn’t mean the whole cake is not worth eating.***





*) Not to mention some other politicians’ judgmental statements. Well if you’re curious, just google these keywords: “Ribka Tjiptaning” “

**) For there are drugstore attendants who dress like doctors, but it’s out of context. I’m just trying to be funny here but only a few of you would get it.

***) This expression might only apply to me. I detest sweetened cherry (not the fresh ones). I would normally eat the base, icing, and every element of the cake but leave the cherries for someone else.

Categories: Daily Rambler, Doesn't Really Look Like A Doctor | 2 Comments

Prague and How to Get Better Pictures of Yourself

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When: October 2012

Why I went there:

  1. To replace my mother who’s having bad knees to accompany my father for a business trip.
  2. To visit a friend in Germany. (The good thing about Europe is the countries are located side by side. It’s like going from Bandung to Jakarta with Cipaganti)
  3. To go somewhere cold and new (it was autumn and I had never been to any country in Central Europe).
  4. To make use of my father’s mileages (Yay half-priced tickets!).

Ten things I learned from this trip:

1. In Wikipedia and Wikitravel I trust. I mean, in term of Prague travel tips and reviews. I won’t write too much about those stuff, because 95% of what I experienced is in accordance to what they wrote.

2. Apply a Schengen visa via Czech Embassy in Jakarta ONLY IF you have no other option. Otherwise, try Netherlands or any Schengen member state embassy that doesn’t treat you like a disease (or still does, but less). Well, the strict visa lady (most possibly a Czech) is quite nice and helpful. She gets your visa issued on time if you have completed all the requirements. But the system sucks big time. There’s NO ONLINE application system, so you have to submit your documents in person, and queue in front of the locked, security-guarded gate (YES ON THE  PEDESTRIAN SIDEWALK) which only opens every Tuesday and Thursday (9-12 for submission and 13-14 for picking up your visa), with no queue system as well. Don’t know if they have changed the policy by now, though, but my experience was “first come first serve”. Moreover, the process takes very long (up to 20 minutes for one person). Thus if you are the 5th person in the line to pick up your visa, chances are you have to go back on the next working day. And beware, sometimes they open a little late.

From now on I will complain less about US visa application for being a pain. Because at least they will eventually let you in, and they have more decent online and queue system. But I still hope that every embassy would be as humane as UK visa services.

3. Prague is very beautiful and clean. A lot more wonderful than the pictures I took (sure Lhuri your pictures are lame). Many people say, it’s like Paris, but cleaner, and less mainstream. I couldn’t agree more and I won’t turn down an opportunity go back one day.

4. Living cost in Prague is cheaper than that in Western Europe countries. The public city transport system is very well developed and quite cheap. And it takes only a 10-15 minutes to get yourself familiar with the routes (I only used subways/metro and trams). Also, souvenirs are not very expensive. I’m pretty satisfied with Stamion, a giftshop near Charles Bridge. Nice price, nice people. Note: 1 Euro = 23-25 CZK. Sometimes you get better rates at certain shops than in money exchangers.

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5. Czech people are friendlier than I expected. They don’t like to be photographed, and are not as joyous as Javanese people who smile all the time for no reason. But generally, they are helpful enough to help a lost tourist. My suggestion: find help from the younger people because they speak English. The reason why some Czechs might be reluctant to assist you find an address is probably the language barrier.

6. Czech people are good-looking. The ugliest lad can still replace Nicky Tirta in one of his sinetron. Well I’m exaggerating, but oh well, they really are beautiful.

7. Be safe. As warned by many articles, beware of stalkers. That’s true. I got followed by a stranger. He appeared shabby, drunk, and possibly homeless. It was horrifying because I was alone (my father is attending the convention), so I tried to stay close with a lot of people in open space, particularly old couples and families with kids. In fact, that’s how I got the stalker back off. I made acquaintance with other harmless-looking strangers who happened to be a very sweet couple and they knew I’d been followed. Those angels walked me back to to hotel safely 🙂

My tips if you’re going solo: keep your purse in your room. Bring only things you can keep in your coat pocket, like photocopy of passport, tickets, cellphone, and sufficient amount of bank notes.  Other alternative, get a Starbucks paper bag as your fashion item. That way you can still carry several larger things like umbrella and bottled water without provoking malicious intention.

8. If you are easy to please (like me), the best-known spots can be visited in just 2 days. Just so you can say to people you have been to Charles Bridges, Prague Castle, Vyšehrad, Wencesclas Square, and seen Astronomical Clock :p

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9. Eurail is comfortable. Very punctual and nice. The booking and stuff aren’t very complicated. So yeah, I’m pretty satisfied.

10. Look, here’s the weird lonely girl! If you want to travel around the city, be in a group of two or three. In addition to safety reason, you have someone to take your picture posing with some cool tourism objects. That way, you don’t end up having to ask strangers to take an awkward photo of yourself next to a cemetery gate (why would someone be photographed next to a cemetery gate anyway?). Or even sadder, doing this in front of a hotel mirror .

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I’ll post about my trip to Papua next time.


Categories: Lazy Traveler | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

South Kalimantan and Why I’m Such a Lazy Traveler

Because I enjoy going to a lot of places, but I want to have as minimum hassle as possible.

For example, even when when I tick that “travel purpose” box on almost all visa applications, I rarely ever travel for the sake of traveling. I always have another purpose, be it the core agenda or an additional one. Most of the time, for work, or accompanying someone.

The pluses:

You can worry less about accommodation, tickets, and all other travel preparations. Someone else is already taking care of it.

The minuses:

You have limited time to explore the place you’re visiting, because you have something else to do. Often when you’re accompanying people, you don’t have enough freedom to do what you want. But I don’t demand much, and am easy to please. So I’m happy to be in certain places and go home with a couple of moderate-quality site-specific pictures taken by a camera phone.

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Earlier last year, I went for a work trip in South Kalimantan. I spent one week in Tanah Laut, and one week in Barito Kuala. Here’s ten things I acquired from the trip.

1. The fish cuisines in south Kalimantan are really, REALLY GOOD. Nine out of ten dishes I had were excellent. Grilled, steamed, fried, anything! Saluang is very famous there but my favorite fish are Lais and Patin (I think it’s Basa fresh water). If you’re not into fish just go for Soto Banjar.

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2. If you are an accessories lover, go to Martapura shopping spot and buy your stuff there. The price can be up to 5 times cheaper than that in Jakarta. People in Kalimantan Shop are friendly and the price they give is good enough.

3. The beaches are okay but not that great. I went to Pantai Srawangan in Tanah Laut and I basically saw……….sand. And seawater. I mean, well, it actually has the potential to be a tourism spot, if cleaner and managed better.

4. There’s no flower in Flower Island (Pulau Kembang), but there are monkeysIf you go to Pasar Terapung and Pulau Kembang, you can confidently say that you’ve been to South Kalimantan. Kalimantan is famous for its numerous rivers. I’m excited to just get in the boat and be able to take pictures with these overly attached monkeys.

The monkey is in the picture on your left hand side. The one on the right is my working partner @ariefnugs. Okay?

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5. There’s only one mall in Banjarmasin. And be accustomed to those times when the power goes off. I mean this doesn’t happen infrequently. But it normally only takes 10-30 seconds. So I can still accept that.

6. There’s almost zero traffic jam. Banjarmasin is not a remote area but doesn’t have as much city atmosphere as Jakarta does. So you might miss an untouched natural sceneries but you won’t have too many problems with mobilization. They have decent roads and land transport is not so hard to find.

7. I find the weather hotter than here in Jakarta. Maybe because it’s closer to the equator. The good thing is there’s (of course) less pollution.

8. People are nice and friendly. Well, basically Indonesians are like that.

9. Next time you go to Banjarmasin, maybe a one-week trip would be useful. I only had around 3 non-consecutive free days so I didn’t get the chance to visit other interesting sites people had been telling me earlier. Like the waterfall, the mining site of Martapura, and several places in different part of Kalimantan like orangutan conservation and Derawan Beach.

10. Look, there’s “Terapi Gangguan Jin”! Meaning if you are possessed by an evil spirit/bad genie, you know where to go :p


That’s it for today. Thanks @ariefnugs for the sunrise picture. Next post is about a trip to Prague in late 2012.


Categories: Lazy Traveler | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

I Was Hungry. So I Ended Up Having a Camel.

I was hungry. But it was pretty late at night and I was too lazy to cook and too alert to fall asleep.

So I needed distraction to forget the hunger.

So I scrolled down my Twitter timeline and (because I live in Indonesia) found a lot of trivial yet intriguing-and-comment-attracting news but I refused to bitchtweet about them because it’s going to be a long long series of lame tweets and still, it’s trivial.

So I decided to ramble in a blog and immediately remembered that I no longer owned one*.

So I had to signup here in WordPress and later they asked me what theme I would be using and although WordPress had warned me not to over-think about it because I could always go back and change it anytime in the future, I was pedantic enough to spend forty minutes to make a decision on this particular issue.

So I tried out many different themes until destiny brought me and this camel-themed theme together. (I don’t know why, perhaps it’s the wooden background, perhaps it’s scientific looking pyramids, perhaps it’s the random camel, I really don’t know, you go ask destiny)

So this post will be irrelevant someday when I eventually opt to change the theme (it’s “Adventure Journal” in case you want to know), or simply replace the camel-containing heading photo with my own, or replace the camel-containing heading photo with a photo of another camel I take by myself, and I honestly don’t know why this camel thing becomes important.

Now I’m too tired to write what I wanted to write in the first place.

Big deal, I’ll do it some other time.


*) There was one on Friendster (YES PEOPLE, FRIENDSTER), but humanity decided to take it down and made it disappear from civilization. Along with the Friendster itself of course.**

**) I use asterisks a lot for no legal purpose.

Categories: Uncategorized | Leave a comment

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