Thursday, 14 January // Terrorism in Jakarta
I had a full day planned today - swimming, coffee, dinner, etc.
At around 11am this morning, my friend messaged me that there was a bombing in central Jakarta. I was at home in my new apartment. I check CNN and there's no coverage. I check Twitter and, shit, it's true. English twitter was just picking it up at this point with about ten tweets. A few minutes later, I change to an Asian news channel broadcasting out of Singapore and it's all over. There are some photos of the victims of the blast - it's graphic.
I'm pretty freaked out because I actually recognize the police post. It's within 50m of the hotel I moved out of yesterday. Good move I guess (thanks @r2wie). I start texting all my friends/family to let them know I'm ok and am in contact with all my Indonesian homies who are keeping me updated on the Indonesian news updates. Really tragic shit. Different services are still reporting different numbers, but I understand there was at least five explosions with at least 17 or 19 injured during the attack.
I cancel all my plans for the day (lol I'm not going outside) and resolve I'm pretty much set here. I'm following the news for a while until my friend Tiara (IG: @mutesm) who I'm supposed to get coffee with messages me like, "Oh I'm already on my way to Taman Anggrek so I'll see you soon". And I'm just like shit didn't you hear?? there's terrorism right now! Don't got Taman Anggrek or anything like that. And she, I don't know why, doesn't understand it... and like thirty minutes later she texts me saying, "ok well I'm just walking around Taman Anggrek if you want to come hang out?"
Hahahhaha this chick is crazy. I keep telling her she shouldn't be at Taman Anggrek because its dangerous, but she insists she can't find my apartments. So I need to go get her. Shieeeet. My friends just told me some rumors about men on motorbikes riding around the city shooting people as well ... and I'm like a pretty tall bule (foreigner), kind of prime target here about to go to a prime target mall. Great. Ok so I put on a hoodie and sweatpants (LOL keep in mind it's 95 degrees out and I'm being really neurotic) and go get her at Taman Anggrek - getting the strangest looks along the way. Pick her up and go back to apartments.
At the apartment we hang and watch CNN for updates and keep in touch with family and friends to make sure all is well. We order some Pepper Lunch (my favorite restaurant in Hong Kong that they also have here) from Go-Jek, it's a motorbike service that also will deliver things under 1,000,000 rupiah (like $85). An older Chinese guy knocks on the door of my apartment and apparently he's staying here also in the twin bedroom??? It's weird but I let him in and chat a bit in Chinese. He's from Beijing. Weird. Anyway, after a while things settle down and we go downstairs to the apartment's pool to do some swimming. It's a bit cloudy/smoggy so it's not really warm, but the water isn't cold and it's okay to swim.
We get back upstairs, take showers, and order some more food and some beers and just watch TV. Watching MTV right now at home relaxing. I hope each of you and your family is safe.