On Sunday, we attended the Jakarta 3rd Ward, a ward of (mostly) American expatriates who live in Jakarta for a couple years for work. (The Bishop works for the American embassy, the counselor for Conoco Oil, etc.) We were still a bit jet-lagged, so we got a have a nap, then dinner with the other senior missionaries here – the Moss’s (office), the Baird’s (Public Affairs), the Mitchell’s and us. All live in the same apartment building.
Monday we went to the office to get started in our transition, which was tough, because we’re trying to absorb all we can, knowing the Mitchell’s are leaving on Thursday. Monday evening was their farewell dinner with President and Sister Rowley and the office missionaries. The dinner was at Gonzo’s, a very good Mexican restaurant in the Lotte Mall, a VERY high end mall not far fro the office.
One comment about the shopping here – malls are everywhere (some incredibly nice, like this one) and the cost of goods is relatively low. Restaurant’s are very cheap (our 2 meals were about $10).
A comment about traffic – the traffic is unbelievable, with cars, buses, taxis and motorbikes all jockeying for position. A 2 lane street has 3 lanes of vehicles. all within inches of each other, all moving and amazingly, it all works. The drivers all just let everyone merge and everything keeps moving and there are surprisingly few fender benders given the amount of traffic and how close they are to each other – I’ve seen one – and no one seems to get mad.
The only way to get around Jakarta is via taxi – Blue Bird taxi’s are everywhere and they are astoundingly cheap – the cost for the 15-20 minute ride from the apartment to the office is about $2 each way.