Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Greek Embassy

The photo above has nothing to do with today's blog, but it is tough to NOT post a cute photo of Kayla...

Trying to find a small office in Jakarta is a stressful endeavor. We spotted the Greek Embassy on the map, and headed off all in a good mood. Good thing we started in a good mood as there was a steady rise in blood pressure, sweat, and bad words as the drive progressed. The Embassy, according to the map, was right after the Menara Building on the left side of a VERY busy road. If you missed it, it would have taken a minimum of 30 minutes to turn around, return in the opposite direction, and then turn around again to get back to where you were going.....not fun in Jakarta traffic.

So, we turned into the parking lot of a large building where we THOUGHT the embassy was. The thought was, well, if it is the wrong building, no problem...we just get back onto the road. Ha haaa haa...bad mistake. It was the wrong building, but getting out of the parking lot turned into a trip in itself. The parking lot was jammed packed with cars all parked on top of eachother with enough room for maybe a sheet of paper to fit between cars. With our monster car, the Everest, it was a work of magic to get out of that parking lot...but we did it.

Back on the main road. We asked for directions...some guy standing by his motorcylce. He had no idea what we were talking about but pointed in the opposite direction. Wrong. I told my driver he was confused, and not to listen to him. I pleaded to keep heading in the direction we were going. Then the Menara building was spotted. "There....there it is, the Menara building....there....stop!!", I screamed. No, we passed it. Arrrrggggh!! "OK, let's keep our cool....no problem, turn here, and maybe we can get back without having to turn around", I said. Well, the turn we made took us on a long journey on a very narrow road through a local village (Kampung)...winding around to who knows where?

After 40 minutes of driving around, we some how mysteriously found our way back to the main road. I spotted the building, and told my driver that Tika and I would get out where we were and walk to the building. So we did. Tika in her high heels. Scotty sweating and not happy. Then we spotted the Greek Embassy sign. Ah, a nice thing to see. Smiles returned to our faces. Trudge through the security, ask directions, take the elevator up to the 12th floor, ask directions again, and finally get to the embassy door. LARGE SIGN that says....Consulate Hours: TUESDAY - FRIDAY 10:00 - 1:00. It was MONDAY at 4:30....and that folks, is life in Jakarta.

So we will try again today. At least we know where it is now.

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