I’ve made a big decision in my life. It’s been more than three years in coming. From next month I will stop living in Jakarta and be moving to Yogyakarta. It all comes back to what I said last week about living a life without regret and it is a decision I should have made a long time ago.
As soon as I moved to Indonesia and started living in Jakarta, I knew that I hated this city; the endless traffic jams, the lack of green space and the polluted air that literally kills you slowly with every breath you take. After two days in the city I had decided that Jakarta was actually worse than Peruvian capital Lima, which up until that point had been my most hated city in the world. Instead of running away though I stayed and like a fatal case of cancer the city grew on me. I started to see some of the plus points about the city, the great Jakarta nightlife, the nice restaurants and the growing circle of friends.
I was becoming an apologist of the worst kind. I was trying to find a silver lining that didn’t actually exist. Bali has great nightlife, Bandung has great food, Raja Ampat has beautiful scenery, the only thing that Jakarta has is jobs. I’m not going to be one of those tourists that say it’s not the city it’s me. No, after living in Jakarta for three years I can say it really is the city.
For three years I ignored the fact that I hated living in Jakarta. I got on with my job, pretended everything was ok and enjoyed my holidays. I’d get together with friends over a beer and relax. Of course the subject of how we all hated Jakarta would come up; the traffic, the pollution, etc. Then feeling like none of us could do anything about it we’d get on with our lives in a city that each and everyone of us hated.
Well I’ve finally decided to do something about it and it feels great. Tomorrow I’ll be heading to Yogyakarta for ten days to try and find a house and within a month I will have stopped living in Jakarta. Instead I’ll be using Yogyakarta as a home base while I’m travelling. So when I’m not exploring new places and seeing incredible things I will be simply enjoying life in a city that has beaches to visit, temples to see and nature to explore. It’s going to be amazing and I’m really looking forwards to it.
[…] about Jakarta. Check out these blogs from two people who have lived in the city. First from Nico Prins, who is desperate to get away and go to Jogja instead, secondly this piece from Boots N All, who […]