Thursday, August 13, 2009

Dial that beeper number / and call the packet man

Sitting in a cafe on Saturday and the cellphone goes:


Hallo, Bapak Simon, ada paket (there is, or I have, a packet) (in a worked up way)

Apa? Siapa ini? (what, who is this?)

Ada paket (louder)

Ada paket? Untuk saya? Dari? (what packet? For me? From?)

Ada paket, ada paket, ada paket, ada paket (getting increasingly louder until he screams it)

He then hangs up.

I call the number back.

I say who it is, in Indonesian, he hangs up. I do this again. He hangs up.

The next day the phone goes again and a voice speaks something in Balinese I think, not Indonesian (or maybe some sort of street mix), very very quickly.

Pelan pelan says I (slowly.....)

Ada paket, ada paket, ada paket, ada paket he screams, increasingly agitated, then hangs up

The next morning my phone goes again, It's a nice woman from Tiki, the courier company.

Mister Simon, we have a packet for you but the driver could not find you.

Ahhh, the driver. Clearly they don't teach communication skills or phone etiquette at Tiki Central.

Please come to our office in Denpasar, it is in Jalan Kapten Rebub. You must bring ID. You can not have it without ID. It is a hardy.

A hardy?

So, later, I check their website and, yes, it is listed as being in Jalan Kapten Rebub...number one in fact. Easy. I look at the such street, I look on google such street. I do a search on google and yep, here is a business marked as being on this street but at number 5, and, yep you can clearly see it on the map, so I print out the map and head off. The business in question is Denpasar Tourism.

Three hours later, having gone around in increasingly convoluted circles, in a one way system that after all these years of navigating it, still beggars disbelief, and having tried to ring their answer, I find Tiki, in a completely differently named street. I find it by excluding all other streets in the square kilometer one by one. It's the last one left.

I park, and wander in to ask for Ibu Henny. Customer service, says the man in the rather grimy smoke filled (with plentiful no smoking signs) front office, and points towards a bunch of tangled bamboo scaffolding.


You must climb over it mister. We are building a new customer service office.

No..surely there is another way? Oh yes, go outside and use the new door down the side. I do this and discover a one meter high hole smashed in the brick wall which I basically need to crawl through (easy if you are a smallish Indonesian, not so user friendly if you happen to be a six foot one aging expat). So, I crawl through to find Ibu Henny. This is not Jalan Kapten Rebub I say. Yes I know, it was before, says the young lady handing me my paket (a new hard drive I'd ordered a week earlier...the 'hardy').

After I'd crawled back out I realised that she forgot to ask for my ID.

1 comment:

George said...

Hilarious. Thanks for sharing!