I had the pleasure of being invited to the Indonesian ambassador’s residence in London to attend their Independence Day celebrations recently. Wearing red and white, I made new friends there and left feeling very fulfilled. Here’s why:
– They know how to make people feel welcome and honoured. Yes, gracious and generous hospitality is in their blood. I visited Jakarta last year and I felt truly at home.
– Incredible food. Yes, I dare proclaim they make the best Asian food. On par with Singapore in terms of quality, taste and inventiveness, and unsurpassed in terms of range and variety – just by virtue of how vast Indonesia is!
– They are loyal to their traditions and values, and yet know how to have a good time. I saw a number of uniformed servicemen, certain ladies and gentlemen seated in a VIP area looking regal in their traditional formal dress (likely to be of status), but blaring in the middle of the garden is the loudest rock band this side of Finchley playing classic rawk tunes, fronted by the most incredible-sounding kebaya-wearing rock singer ever. Her name is Ana Aldiana and her voice was so powerful the outer speakers blew. Seriously. But they rocked so much. Even makciks in their headscarves moshed to Smoke on the Water. Amazing camaderie!
– High quality entertainers; Ana Aldiana is one, and the day’s presenters spoke and interacted very well in their very crisp yet friendly way. I remember every time we turned on the telly in Jakarta, if it wasn’t the news, it was some really talented band or singer performing. They are just good! I am very pleased to be able to get to know the Indonesian community in London, and look forward to meeting more of you soon.
This is a very short clip of Ana Aldiana and her audience, from children to grandmas!