Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Culture of Late

Yesterday I went on a field trip with my daughter, using up valuable annual leave, but I thought it was important because she missed the last field trip because we had just come back from vacation and couldn't plan for it, and she is a sweet child, didn't want her to be left out again.

First off, the school doesn't take the kids to the location, its up to the parent to get the child to the location (what kind of field trip is that?!), and than we have to stay for the field trip. I understand this is a group of 4-5 year olds, but why do a field trip if the parent has to do all the work? I could just take the child myself, no?

The field trip doesn't start until 9:30, already an hour and a half into my work day; at least if it started earlier I could finish early but this was not the case. Daughter and I get there and the event starts late, parents are made to sit downstairs while kids get to take the tour and go upstairs, again not clear why parents were needed, besides as taxi services?

My other child, the 2 - year old meanwhile is at pre-school, regular day for him. The nanny is expecting my daughter and I to be done by 11am, so she and the driver and my daughter can go to pick up the 2 year old at school (he has to be picked up promptly at noon or we get dinged). When does the field trip end....11:20, she doesn't hear from us and leaves at 11:30 via cab. We get home by 11:45, but now the nanny is gone, so of course I have to stick around, can't leave my 5 year old by herself. Traffic at that time of day in Jakarta, terrible. Nanny doesn't get home till 12:45, I don't get to work till after 1pm; thankfully my boss will let me only use 4 hours of annual leave and make up the rest of the time by working through lunch.

What is the point of all this rambling...the fact that it seems here in Indonesia, no one has any sense of urgency, I work for the US government, we don't run that way. But Indonesia, doesn't matter if someone is waiting, you take your time, traffic is so slow because of this, there is no sense of urgency, no "I gotta get there" more like "we will get there when we get there," which is fine if you are on a Sunday stroll but not when one has to get to work. What I can't understand is that no one seems to care, I told the nanny to hurry but I'm sure she was still chatting with her nanny friends before leaving the pre-school. I find it very frustrating, but I suppose such is life living abroad, aye!


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