Well, where is home for me, I wonder. Technically, I am no longer an Indonesian citizen, and my own house is in Adelaide. I sometimes I have to stop myself and carefully say that “I’m travelling to Indonesia” and not “I’m going home” if my colleagues ask me about my annual pilgrimage to Jakarta and Bandung. Because my home is in Adelaide, I suppose. However, being in Indonesia this time does make me feel like home – maybe I haven’t yet experienced the frantic rush hours to and from the office again, and I haven’t re-experienced being stuck in a traffic jam for an hour that gives me enough time to sleep until I’m awakened by the taxi driver.
When I arrived at the airport in Jakarta, I had to get my Visa On Arrival, since I’m travelling using my Australian passport. The process is straightforward but the undermanned office made it very slow – the delay was compounded by the long queues at Immigration. I had to wait for another hour before I could get out of the airport. I was picked up by my sister’s driver and the drive to her house was quite uneventful. That evening, I handed out the gifts to my second sister’s children – and had a relatively good sleep. This morning I went to my old church – it was great to see so many spiritually hungry worshippers. They sang and worshipped with such gusto that I really felt at home with them. I saw old ladies and men singing and lifting their arms without caring too much about their pride. Very different spirit to the one in Australia indeed.
After church, I went home with my third sister’s family and we made a detour to my second sister’s house, to pick up the gifts for her and the whole family. I then went to the mall for lunch – I was so looking forward to my plate of Nasi Padang, but to my horror, the Sari Ratu booth had been closed!!! Argh! At the end, I had Siomay Bandung for lunch (mmmmm!), and then did some shopping (business shirts, CDs and table-runners), and caught up with my friends Lily and Anton and their children. We had a good chat – after which, I made my way to my sister’s house to rest for the day.
So where is home? I suppose being a nomad at heart, I carry my home around with me. Just like an old song that says “Whenever I lay my hat, that’s my home”, well, my ‘hat’ is with me and it is currently laid in Indonesia, until I return to Australia in 11 days time … 🙂