69: Five Favourite Things

Jakarta Bound is a travelogue about life in one of the largest and most densely populated cities in South East Asia.


Ok, maybe I’m being a little too optimistic when I say I was starting to like the place, but I was certainly finding more of my comforts, and for me certain home comforts are essential to… well, being comfortable.

There are five things that I need in my life that will keep me generally satisfied: food, films, music, sleep and sex. If I can satisfy those needs, I am pretty much content. This may be oversimplifying life a little, but sometimes a simple life is a happier life. Sure, I could include things like family, friendship and love, but I know I have all of those things. And I’m not talking about Maslow’s psychological hierarchy of needs either, I’m simply talking about my hierarchy of comfort needs, and for the most part, they were being fulfilled.

I had come to master the two malls on my doorstep. They had become my big walk-in menus. I had sampled quite a lot they had on offer, but the beef rendang in Java Kitchen hit the spot every time. There was also a cheerful Chinese woman who spoke English who had a little warung in the shopping precinct on site at Mediterania 2 that opened up for food for a couple of hours in the afternoon. Her food was unbelievably cheap and unbelievably tasty. I had tried a Domino’s pizza from Tribeca Garden’s one time when I had an unassailable urge for some straight up western food without spices, but the pepperoni substitute gave the whole thing a strange flavour that I didn’t like. However, the PHD (Pizza Hut Direct) on the street just outside the apartment building did a very good spicy beef pizza that thoroughly satisfied. In between meals I snacked on the Japanese bread cakes from the cute little Hoshi bakery in Central Park and the chocolate muffins in Bread Talk. I got fruit, yoghurts, drinks and cereals from the supermarket so on the whole the food mountain – which was probably the most important – had most definitely been conquered.

Satisfying the film void was easy enough as I had cable TV with both the HBO and Fox channels. Not exactly a choice on demand, but there was enough to fill the void of boredom on most evenings. As for music, I never leave home without it. Whilst Jakarta had offered up nothing in its bars or clubs, I had my own library on my hard drive, not to mention Soundcloud, YouTube and Traxsource on demand, when I could get internet that is.

With food, films and music sorted, I had most of my needs covered, but sleeping was not so easy. Ever since Vivi had put the fan between me and Simon’s rooms, a lack of good sleep was gradually developing into a burgeoning issue. I’ve never been a great sleeper, but waking up half way through the night to turn the fan and aircon off was pissing me off. That was something that had to give at some point.

So what about sex? What about it? I wasn’t getting any of that either. My Latin Lover was still on vacation in Venezuela so I didn’t really hear anything from her. Not that that would have constituted sex, but it would have at least felt like some kind of intimate connection. As such, I was trying mightily hard to ignore the libidinous buzz in my balls that I woke up to every day. The sultry tropical atmosphere didn’t help. Going into the refrigerated EF office every day cooled me down a little. Then spending the rest of the day looking at my big, ugly work colleagues took my mind of sex completely. That is unless Yulia or Shirley were working, two attractive Indonesian girls who worked as sales agents. They were coffee coloured brush strokes of perfect feminine curves created from God’s own hand. From the tops of their pretty little heads to the tips of those little toes squeezed into their high-heeled shoes they were a delight to look at. But even if they weren’t working, you couldn’t walk through Jakarta for more than five minutes without seeing a beautiful woman – a naturally beautiful woman too. Three out of five is pretty good, but I needed my five things. If I’m tired enough I can sleep through anything, but the sex, something had to give sooner or later.


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