30 September 2010

SX005 moody in Malang

Everyday life in moody Malang. OK, so not moody itself, but I am moody at the moment.
I run through my day and my current thoughts on learning Indonesian at UMM... or not. The clouds are brewing over France right now, as 2 of the French girls look set to do what their government did a few years ago... drop a nuclear bomb in Australia's backyard!

Really struggling to understand and communicate with the Kos boys I live with. Yeah, they look cute at times, BUT I do also want to be able to chat to them.

Lucky I have so much cheap deep-fried fatty food to lift my spirits, and my weight. LOL

>click here to listen online< But it's easier if U subscribe in iTunes!

27 September 2010

SX004 city hall & grub

>>> OK, please subscibe to this thru iTunes! I cannot insert the video into this post on slow Indonesian internet. If you don't subscribe, you're missing the actual content. Thnx <<<
Join me and 2 friends (1 is Will) as we wander briefly on the streets of Malang.

Take a walk with me around 1 of the many <strong>many</strong> restaurants near the campus, and my Kos. This style of food is from Padang (Sumatra). Where it is all out on display, and you choose what you want. This restaurant has a bigger range than usual, so great for a vegetarian like Will, - but still no BACON! :-(

This video is pretty darn short, cause of the file size upload issues in Indonesia. Perhaps that suits your attention span anyway? ;-)

ps- the internet is doing my head in. It has taken 45 minutes to upload this file (not yet finished either). urgh
   no, make that another 30 min, I had to upload again. :-(

21 September 2010

1st day of class, take 2

Well, as you may have heard in my podcast, I should've started class yesterday (Monday), but we started properly today.  Hmm.... what to say?

well firstly, as I expected, I have been put into the intermediate class. This is because I was friendly and chatty with staff on Saturday and Monday, and now they all think I can do/say/understand more than the usual tourist/intro stuff.
Today all the Darmasiswa students were there, bar 2. I chatted to a lovely guy from Thailand, whose bahasa Indonesia was probably better than mine. However, he was sent to the beginners class! :-(
There are 4 in the intermediate class: me, 2 French girls, & 1 Russian boy. Thus there'll be about 6 in the beginners class.

The real bad news however, is that we also learnt our class schedule...
We have just 3 lessons per week, for 2 hours each time!!!  Yes, just 6 hours in an entire week :-(  I think that is really crap. Will has 4-6 hours/day, every day at his Uni in Semarang. 

So, for 4 days/week, I have quite literally NOTHING TO DO. And on the other 3 days, I have nothing to do after 11am.

oh, cancel that... I DO have something to do. As the only person from an English speaking country, I am thus the sole Darmasiswa student who must 'volunteer' to teach English at the Uni.
- I will get some 'pocket money' for this apparently. I don't have any info yet on just how much I will be doing, or when etc. However; I really don't mind. Anything to meet students and make connections. ~ my tiny sweat box room, is not conjusive to just 'hanging out' in!

ps- please leave feedback on the video/podcasts.

SX003 Bieber is here!

This is an update of my first week or so in Malang. Well, the last few days especially, as I sort out my accomodation and go to (not) my first class at Uni.

My major issue is the lack of fast internet (or access), and how that is making podcasting rather difficult. Please bare with me kids.

I chuck in some cultural observations too ;-)
Opening 'music' (dare I call it that?), courtesy of bloody Justin Bieber - who is all over Indonesia sadly.

20 September 2010

SX002 Batu with Will

Will and I took an Angkot (public transport mini-bus) from my Uni campus up to Batu (further up the hill).
The very cute driver was chatting away to me as we drove up the mountain, but of course I could not understand him.  :-(  I did manage to understand that he was trying to tell me all the good places to go in/around Batu.
When we arrived, after some discussion (miracle), he offered to drive us around and show us all the sights; in the bus. It was only Rp 100,000 each (A$12). We really didn't understand where we would go, but 3 hours later we had seen heaps of great stuff!
- just love Indonesia, and the helpful people. ;-)

Mas Will really didn't want to be filmed, but I managed a few seconds of him. LOL

NBN Indonesia?

well, the NBN (National Broadband Network) may be all the rage back in Oz - at least in theory, I am finding it extremely difficult to find ANY fast internet connection in Indonesia! :-(
Right now I am in an expensive coffee shop near the campus, using their free WiFi ~  FREE, but very slow.
e.g. I have 1 game downloading in iTunes now; 354MB size, after 1hr here, it says i still have 3 hours to go.

more importantly however, is that it is also proving very difficult to upload audio and video files. The connection is so slow, it often just times out.

My well made plans are all falling apart, as I have 3 videos ready to go, but...   who knows if i will ever be able to post them.  :-(


14 September 2010

Malang at last

Finally, I am in Malang!  Actually, I arrived yesterday afternoon on the ekonomi train from Surabaya. It was just Rp 40,000 (A$5), but very crowded and hot (when it stopped moving). However, thanks to a nice Indonesian boy who carried my 2 bags (while I balanced the 26kg bag on my head), we found seats near the front of the train. It would have been a long 3 hours if we had to stand up.
Interestingly enough, Malang is just 93km from Surabaya (the 2nd biggest city in Indonesia). You can imagine then how slow, and how many times the train stopped along the way.

My biggest frustration with Indonesia so far (other than not being able to remember much language), is that I finding it impossible to get a micro-SIM for my iPhone! :-(  I am going to try again today, and perhaps go to the head office of one of the phone companies here. Unlike in Australia, the phone shops here a dime a dozen, but they are not 'official' shops owned by the Telcos. Thus I just get weird looks when I show them my micro-SIM.
(Yes, if you are wondering, there IS micro-SIMs in Indonesia. I have found info and press releases online about it).

Tomorrow, Will is visiting from Semarang. Yay!

audio/video/pictures will come later - if I can get my 'own' internet access.

12 September 2010

Trial audio via email

Hi all.
Baby baby baby oooooooh...
I am still experimenting with uploading things via email.

11 September 2010

SX001 arrived in Surabaya

I am now in Surabaya, safe n sound. I only got 1 hour sleep last night; cause I had SO much to do before I left.
On a positive note, I left Australia with all 3 rooms of my house rented. That will keep the bank away for a while!

Hungry Jacks

Just landed at Singapore airport, terminal 2. Definitely only 4* compared to new T3.

Other than some shopping at Miu Miu, I've just enough time for a Whopper arvo tea before I run to my Surabaya flight.

08 September 2010