Tag Archives: Jakarta

After tense election season, Indonesians breathe sigh of relief

Today my Indonesian language teacher showed up for our lesson wearing a blue and red checkered shirt, typical of the supporters of the newly elected president Joko Widodo (known by his nickname, Jokowi). Today, it seems like the wait is finally … Continue reading

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Southeast Asia’s forests: vital and vanishing

Forests are key for our food systems and our economy. Forests are a pantry for the world’s poor, and an incubator for biodiversity and unknown genetic material that could lead to vital scientific discoveries. Even those of us who think we live in urban environments may be more dependent on forests than we realize. Continue reading

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Jakartans jockey carpool laws

If you’ve been following this blog, you’ve read all about the trials of Jakarta traffic, but there are a few fascinating tidbits left to learn. The city has in fact made an attempt at limiting traffic on the most major … Continue reading

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Jakarta takes first steps for sidewalks

Yesterday the Jakarta Globe (one of two major English-language newspapers here) published an optimistic cover piece about a movement to improve Jakarta’s sidewalks. As I’ve said in previous posts, transport in this city is a problem almost beyond description, as … Continue reading

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Bangkok can provide lessons for Jakarta

When describing Indonesia, people often refer to its nearest neighbors as points of comparison. These include Malaysia, the Philippines, Vietnam, and Thailand. Its two fellow middle-income countries, the Philippines and Thailand, make useful points of comparison because their respective capitals, … Continue reading

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Jakarta’s festive, grisly holiday

On Tuesday, Indonesian Muslims sacrificed animals to please Allah. In doing so they remembered the story of Abraham from the Quran, who was willing to sacrifice his own son for God, and they remembered God’s kindness for providing a sheep … Continue reading

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Streetside livestock bring redemption and risk

Once a year New York City sidewalks fill up with pine trees for sale. Once a year Jakarta sidewalks fill up with livestock for sale. As Muslims plan to sacrifice them in Allah’s name – as I wrote in our … Continue reading

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In Jakarta, surge in urban husbandry precedes day of sacrifice

As I’ve mentioned, Jakarta is a city of strange juxtapositions. Our lovely housing complex is surrounded by a wall; on the other side, just behind our house and slightly uphill, is a quarter-acre lot that until last week was vacant, … Continue reading

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Reckless bus drivers make headlines

As a follow-up to my previous post about transportation: Jakarta bus drivers made headlines this week. The Jakarta Globe reported that “almost half of Jakarta’s 28,000 public transport drivers are either not in possession of a motor vehicle license or … Continue reading

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In the absence of public works, Jakartans cope with a daily slog

Traffic is the unifying element in Jakarta life; it’s effect on the lives of all Jakartans cannot be overstated. Unless you have been in it, Jakarta traffic is difficult to understand. Each day, 28 million people go to work and … Continue reading

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