Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Selamat Ulang Tahun Indonesia!

It's August, it's a nationwide people party in Indonesia - Indonesia declared the Independence Day on August 17th, 1945. Our founding fathers - Soekarno and Hatta - the first president and vice president were great visioners. Despite the fact that Indonesia was the most populous moslem country in the world, they built our nation as a secular nation with religious freedom.

I wish I can show you the people party, where rich and poor Indonesians play together, unfortunately our trip is at the end of the year.

Here is an old picture from a few years ago, where my friends and I celebrated it in Pittsburgh :)

Selamat Ulang Tahun Indonesia! Please translate ;)

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Bahasa (2) - Same or similar words ...

We have a few same words, I might help you, especially when they are food related :)
Some of them are foreign words that were absorbed to Bahasa Indonesia, some of them might be the other way around, maybe ... I am not too sure about that.

mangga = mango
rambutan = rambutan
durian = durian
pepaya = papaya
kari = curry

es krim = ice cream
kopi = coffee --> es kopi = ice coffee
teh = tea --> es teh = ice tea

Can you see the pattern from the words above?

donat = donut
sup = soup
saus = sauce

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Bahasa (1)

Bahasa means language, Indonesian speaks Bahasa Indonesia, but westerners say Indonesian speak Bahasa. That's wrong :)

Bahasa Indonesia is simple. There is no present and past tense, there is no masculine or feminine words.

The structure of Bahasa Indonesia is similar to English:

Subject + Predicate + Object + Place/Time

We can also put Place/Time before the Subject.

These are the list of important words that we usually use as subjects:

Saya, Aku : I
Kamu : You
Kalian : You (for more than one people)
Dia : He/She
Mereka : They

So let's try:

Tadi malam saya makan nasi goreng di restoran.

Tadi malam : last night
Di restoran: at a restaurant.

You should be able to understand the whole sentences ...

Thursday, July 29, 2010


These are the words that you supposed to use to me :)

sayang = honey
cantik = pretty, beautiful
manis = sweet

Of course you also have to know these words, that sometimes also describes me ... only sometimes, hahaha ...

galak = mean
manja = spoiled

Last but not least, your favorite ...

pendek = short, shortie :))

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Trivia facts

These are trivia facts about Indonesia that you might find interesting

1. Indonesia has more than 10,000 islands, I don't know exactly how many they are. I remember my school books said 13,000 something.

2. Indonesia has three time zones: west, central, and east. Places where we will visit are mostly in western time zone, which in summer time 11 hours ahead of eastern time here.

3. Indonesian are generally religious - because they "have to" believe in God, otherwise they are going to be in trouble with the Government.

4. If you think that all Indonesians have skin tone like me, you are wrong. Most of them yes. Some of them has fair skin, more like Chinese, some of them looks more like African than Asian, with dark skin and curly hair. They come from island of Papua, in the eastern part of Indonesia.

5. Yes, a lot of people believe in ghosts and spirits.

6. Celebrities are just the same like here. They have a lot of unimportant drama, and the media overexposes them.

7. We have so many local languange (duh, of course, we have more than 13,000 islands) but in general our generation speak Indonesian.

8. Some Indonesians are super rich, some are extremely poor, the difference are just too extreme, especially in Jakarta. I can easily bring you to a "field trip" to see both sides ...

I am out of ideas ... my brain is fried from the long day at customer site. Good night!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Nasi Goreng and Kecap Manis

Who can resist nasi goreng ?? You might reject the idea of having a full meal for breakfast, but nasi goreng is simply irresistible.

My mom grinds some shallots, red chili, garlic, saute them a little bit followed by a plate of white rice, then pour some sweet soy sauce and salt, stir it until done. Don't forget to garnish it with sunny side up, cucumbers, and tomatoes. Voila, it looks like the picture above ...

Do you know what is the Indonesian word for sweet soy sauce? Kecap manis, and it is pronounced very similar to "ketcup". Funny isn't it :) ? Kecap = soy sauce, manis = sweet. Believe me or not, kecap is one of the most important item for Indonesian.

I am craving for nasi goreng ...

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


Hey, I am not talking about alcohol :p ... since traditionally Indonesian do not drink alcohol. What I am talking about here is the variety of drink that we have in Indonesia.

Number one: air putih or water. If you translate it word by word, air putih = white water, but it simply means water. Most of Indonesian like to drink air putih, yes, we do not drink soda that much. Keep in mind that never drink tap water in Indonesia, as we do not have a good drinking water system. People who live in big cities usually buy drinking water, but my parents are still kinda traditional, they always boil the water, cool it down, and put it in the bottles or jug.

In a lot of areas including where my parents live, people like to drink tea. They served it differently though. In West Java (where Iis from) they serve it unsweetened, while in my hometown they are crazy about sweet tea. We do not put milk or anything else other than sugar, whether it is for hot tea or ice tea. Among the common type of tea are jasmine tea and black tea. My mom usually prepares tea for everybody each morning and evening. How do we pronounce tea in Indonesia? Teh. The 'e' is pronounced like 'e' in the word "else". Don't forget to pronounce the 'h' at the end.

Despite the fact that we have one of the best coffee in the world (you name it! Toraja, Sumatra, Java, Kopi Luwak) Indonesian do not drink coffee as much as tea. In some areas maybe, but certainly not in Yogyakarta. But don't forget to remind me to shop for some coffee when we are there.

We have some unique drinks like boiled ginger
- not my favorite, es cendol (ice = es) - remember the drink that we ordered in Penang, es jeruk = squeezed orange ice, this is my favorite, and young coconut ice. I am sure you will enjoy most of them, because generally they are very tasty and refreshing.