Thursday, September 07, 2006

An off-key rainbow

Our friend John found this great club, Warung Apresiasi (Appreciation Cafe) near Blok M. The first time we went they had a bunch of different bands, and the place was packed, but Friday night when we went back it was an open-mic night with a fairly small crowd.

The guy who's second from the right is the MC, Joko, who goes by the stage name Joker. He's very charismatic; you can tell he's one of those people who's been putting on song-and-dance shows since age 4. Somehow he cajoled me into getting up and singing the only Indonesian song I know: "Pelangi, Pelangi" (Rainbow, Rainbow), a children's song we memorized to learn our colors. As you know if you've ever heard me sing, I can't sing, so it was somewhat mortifying, but it was also funny and strangely liberating.

After the music ended at midnight, we hung around and talked to Joker and some of the other guys who run the place. The cafe is actually part of a larger charitable organization. They've built a sports and cultural center in back where you can try painting, martial arts or rock climbing, and they run programs for the local street kids. They've landscaped the place with lots of plants and created a little oasis in this intensely urban part of town.

We're hoping to go back soon -- it seems like a nice place to hang out or do some volunteer work. Just chatting was great. Lately I've been wanting to have more substantive conversations in Indonesian, beyond just "I'd like one of those spicy things" or "turn left at the light." So it was a good night.

My apologies for all the cellphone pictures recently. The light meter in my camera has died, and we need to figure out where to get it fixed.


jim said...

Unfortunately none of us seem to have pulled natural singing talent out of the gene pool. But don't let that hold you back...Mom never did! I'm sure she would have been proud of you!

michele said...

i am issuing you a "false modesty" award. i've not only heard you sing, i've heard you harmonize! and i thought you sounded really good.

i suspect having to perform a children's song in indonesian in front of lots of strangers would make anybody lose their talent (except perhaps for an indonesian children's music performer).

mr_john said...

I enjoyed it, I thought Chad was going to die of mortification though...

I also think that your blog post here makes it sound you like you were much more passive in the process than it looked like to me...

Come on Trish, how much cajoling was there?

kopisusu2 said...

Hmm. With all due respect I must impeach your credibility as a witness, Mr. John -- you were too far away to hear the cajoling. (Plus I already bribed the prosecutor and the judge. Case closed.)

As for harmonizing, M. ... are you sure I wasn't just so far off key, I was on key?

And yes, Jim, I was definitely thinking of Mom. Do you think she got an answer to her question as to why she couldn't sing? I hope so.

Sarah said...

Hey I know the place :)

Tht's my fav place in Jakarta also, they serve good live music and the atmosphere also friendly.

Good for you you managed to be there :)