I’m back in Jakarta again. Not much has changed, although at least for now things seem less busy. That might just be because it’s Saturday at noon and most people might not be out and about…other than that things are as I remember them. Smells, especially, are quite striking. I never quite noticed it, but Southeast Asian malls have a particular odor as well. Not a bad odor, but a peculiar odor, some sort of mixture of perfume and boiling palm oil.
The hotel is nice, a bit nicer than the Hotel Cemara where JM and I stayed when we first arrived. It has a business center and a functioning pool, both of which should be useful. The restaurant looks OK as well. Our room is small with two small single beds, but it’ll have to do. I guess James and I are going to get to be REAL good friends over the next three weeks.
A final note–Singapore Airlines clearly surpasses all other airlines in quality. My last air trip was on Northwest to Phoenix, which was terrible. On Singapore Airlines, I’m talking about over 60 (sixty!) movies available ON DEMAND, plus Family Guy, CSI, The Office, and loads more on demand, and even Super Mario Brothers and Tetris, all programmed for your seat. The wine was good, as was the Tiger Beer, although not quite as cold as I would have preferred. I will say that the seats aren’t too big. Oh, and another thing…my plane got in half an hour late and I had to sprint to make my connection in Singapore. The reason why we were late? According to our pilot, "heavy traffic" over Afghanistan caused us to be re-routed. Yikes.