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My First Professional Step in Jakarta

Before moving to Jakarta, I began my professional step by searching for a job first. I mainly browsed JobsDB to find the job information. I found many jobs there, and send my applications to some of them that I thought were relevant to my qualifications. Then I also contacted my friends who had already been working in Jakarta.

Eva Soeryono, an ex-colleague, suggested me to apply to her company, PT. Outsource Indonesia. It was an human resource outsourcing company. Eva said the wage was fair and she liked it there because she could learn many new things. Interested, I sent in my application to her boss, Mr. Ferry.

A few days later, I had a phone call from PT. Outsource Indonesia. Mr. Ferry invited me to come to Jakarta for an interview. We scheduled the interview then I flew there. Yes, this time I took an airplane. Since it was not a holiday, the fare was pretty cheap.

When I arrived at Cengkareng Airport in Jakarta, my girlfriend had been already waiting for me there. How sweet :). Then we took the airport bus to Terminal Blok M. Then we took a cab to PT. Outsource Indonesia around Jalan Senopati. The office was small and quiet. Mr. Ferry, the boss was pretty nice. He explained to me everything about the company. He also answered my questions without hesitant. He seemed to be interested but he told me to wait for his news since he needed to discuss about my salary requirement with the financial department. Then I left the office.

In Jakarta, my girlfriend booked me a room at Hotel Sentral in Jalan Pramuka, Jakarta Utara. The price for standard room is Rp. 250,000 a night. It was roughly the same as my previous room at Hotel Cipta, but I got a very much better room. With a large king-size bed, tv cable, bathroom with a bathtub, a comfy sofa, and a nice indoor decoration, the price couldn’t be wrong. Unlike Hotel Cipta, it also had a swimming pool although the condition was not so great.

After spending two nights in Jakarta, then I flew home to Surabaya, continued working at Excellogix. Not long after, Mr. Ferry called me again, he said that I was accepted and he required me to go there once again to meet his client. Just before, I got an email from PT Metalogix Infolink Persada aka MIP aka X/Link inviting me to Jakarta for an interview. I recalled that I also applied to X/Link who opened a job position in JobsDB. For my convenience, I arranged the schedule for both of them so I would only take one trip.
Having taken another flight, I met Mr. Ferry, then he drove me to his client office. It was the Astra Credit Company (ACC), one of the largest automobile credit company in Indonesia. He took me to some directors of ACC and they conducted another interview with me.

After a few hours, we went back to the office. He said that I was already accepted but he required me to wait for the clients decision whether they would hire me or not. But if they wouldn’t, he already had a backup plan for me. I hoped it was not another travel to Jakarta another day, did he know that it cost me a lot of money?

The next day, I went to X/Link in Menara Kebon Sirih aka Gedung Bimantara. Honestly, it was the coolest and most modern office building I ever entered. Compared to this, the Outsource Indonesia office is um, nothing :D. I went to the 7th floor where X/Link located. I met the receptionist, Mbak Dahrie, who asked me my business. I told her that I had an appoinment with Mr, uhm, Mr… Damn, I forgot his name. I randomly picked a name, Mr. Ferry. Hahaha. That was the name of PT. Outsource Indonesia. The receptionist told me to wait for a moment while she made a call. Ah, it seemed that there was somebody called Ferry too. Lucky me :p. Confused, the receptionist told me that Mr. Ferry didn’t have an interview appointment today. Oh great :(. Luckily, the receptionist was kind enough to ask the others. Then she told me that Mr. Johannes Sukamtoh did have the appointment with me then she took me to his room.

That was the first time I met Mr. Johannes, the Technical Director. I was rather surprised because he asked many technical questions to me, such as: “What is the different between TCP and UDP as well as thread and process.” I couldn’t answer some of them, but strangely, he seemed pretty satisfied and kindly gave me the correct answers. He then lead me to Mr. Halim Sugandi, the General Manager. He didn’t look like any average middle-aged man, instead he looked rather nerdy. And, like Mr. Johannes, he also asked me more technical questions. Fortunately, the questions were pretty much the same, and this time I could handle them all because the clues given by Mr. Johannes.

After the interview session, Mr. Halim gave his “okay” to Mr. Johannes and I was taken to Mr. Johannes office once again. Then Mr. Johannes started to talk about the company profile, and why shoud I work there. He also asked me about my expected salary. He didn’t give me my expectation, but instead he promised me that I could achieve a better career and living there. I told him that I needed some time to think since I also needed to consider the offer of Mr. Ferry of PT. Outsource Indonesia. But Mr. Johannes insisted me to take his offer soon so I could work ASAP. Well, I did need the job ASAP, and since Mr. Ferry didn’t give me the exact day when I could get to work, I thought I would take Mr. Johannes’ offer. And did I mention that I would work in a much cooler building too? :p

So there we go. I made the deal with Mr. Johannes and told him that I would work for him starting from the next month.

So I came home to Surabaya and gave my resignation letter to my bosses at Excellogix, Mr. Tan It Pin and Mrs. Vera Sumargo. I also sent an email to Mr. Ferry telling him my apologize that I already made a deal with another company.

And that was my first professional step in Jakarta. This story is the prequel of: First Days in Jakarta. You can click here to read it.

First Days in Jakarta

Living in Jakarta is a great change in my life. I don’t know if it will be better or was, but I do know that there will be someone beside me all the time.

November 19: A Bad Start

I was with my family in Jember. Around 1PM, carrying a heavy backpack and a unit of PC (also heavy), I took a bus to Surabaya. It was a Mila Patas (Cepat-Terbatas) Bus. Although the fare was way more expensive than regular bus fare, I took the bus because of its comfort and convenience.

It’s comfort and convenience indeed, at least halfway to Surabaya. Soon after we passed Probolinggo (about two hours trip), the driver stopped the bus. Then he told us that the bus had an air conditioning problem and must return to its base immediately. What the $%^&!! The passengers (including me) complained a lot. But nothing we could do but try to get another bus. We stepped out of the bus and hey, it’s raining men, hallelujah!! Some times later, a regular bus showed up and I thought the bad luck ended.

Was it? Somehow another series of unfortunate events was about to begin. Well, what could I expect from a regular bus? There’s this little girl peed on the bus floor near me. Some men smoked heavily in their seat behind me. It’s regular in this regular bus I think. So I just held my breath and hoped we would get to Surabaya soon.

How soon is soon? After an hour, we got stuck in a heavy traffic jam. And I meant a really heavy traffic jam. The bus couldn’t move forward even an inch for two hours. My only consolation was the text messages from my darling. But hey, my cellphone beeped loudly and the display told me that it ran out of battery. Oh gosh.

Now I only hoped that the rain stopped sooner so I could walk to the nearest angkot (a public transportation vehicle) along with my belonging. But the rain didn’t stop when the bus finally arrived at Bungurasih (the bus terminal in Surabaya) after 2 hours late of schedule. So I took the nearest cab to go to my aunt’s house at Wisma Tropodo. Recent raise of fuel price was still astonishing. The cab fare was even more expensive than the bus ticket from Jember to Surabaya. But I didn’t care as long as I got to Wisma Tropodo soon. I was tired and hungry.

When I arrived at my aunt’s house, I charged my phone then went to buy Bakso Solo. It’s delicious but pricey. Never mind as long as it could satisfy my hunger. Two portions of bakso certainly did satisfy me. Now I should prepare for my departure to the airport. I got a plane to Jakarta to catch tonight. My plane took off late at the night, around 10PM and it’s scheduled to arrive in Jakarta about 11PM. By the time, the airport bus won’t operate. So I should wait until morning to get it. Unless I wanted to spend much more money to get a cab. I already decided to spend the night in Jakarta airport. And my girlfriend would be there accompanying me.

After eating bakso, I returned to my aunt’s house to get my belongings. I also met my grandma and had a nice talk. Then I checked my phone and it’s been fully recharged. I turned it on to get the news of my girlfriend. She should be in the airport already. But I was very surprised. She told me that she missed the bus and she asked me whether she should took a cab. I didn’t let her do it because it’s too dangerous to be in a cab alone in the late night.

I went to the airport earlier so I won’t miss the plane, only to find that it was delayed for an hour. I didn’t even have the will to curse anymore. So I just waited impatiently for the plane. Thanks God, I finally got to Jakarta, around midnight. So I tried to look for a vacant bench to spend the night. That’s it, let’s call it a day.

November 20: At Last My Suffering’s Over

Early in the morning I got the airport bus take me to Blok M. I met my girlfriend there and it changed my whole mood. Then we took a cab to Jalan Dokter Satrio, where my boarding house was located. Unfortunately, the cab driver didn’t really know how to reach it. Since it’s not an uncommon adress, I somehow wondered why he could be a driver of a wellknown taxy company, Blue Bird. And that was not my first experience with drivers who didn’t know the city well. Luckily, my girlfriend had been there several times so she could guide the driver.

When we arrived at the boarding house, the owner (a good middle-aged man), greeted us warmly. But once again, things didn’t work as I expected. The owner had not finished installing the air conditioner. But he immediately ordered his man to work on it. I got a pretty big room on the second floor. It’s in the corner. Nice placement. But I felt a little discomfort since the room wall and flooring was made of wood. Considering that sometimes I could behave brutally, I was afraid I would ruin the room. Anyway, thanks to my girlfriend who had worked hard to find me a nice room.

After resting for a few hours, we went to a nearby mall, Plaza Semanggi, to have some food. Then I decided to go to the movie to watch the Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire movie. But we definitely had no luck. The tickets had been sold out. Never mind, it would still be played in the next 4 weeks or so. Since we were at a mall, we continued to shop for my everyday needs before we went home.

November 21: And I Thought My Suffering’s Over?

It was my first day at the new company. Since I still wasn’t familiar with the city, I got up early in the morning so I won’t get late. I took a mikrolet (a public transportation) to go to the bus stop. Then I took the correct bus to Menara Kebon Sirih where I worked. Everything was okay. Or was it? When I got off the bus to walk to my office, I suddenly realized that I couldn’t find one of my cellphone in my bag. I was so surprised when I noticed that my bag had a hole at the bottom. Damn it!! I lost my first cellphone, Nokia 3350 along with my first mobile number, 081 2305 8773. This surely pissed me off. But not that bad. I could still control my mood so it didn’t ruin my whole day. And I was so lucky I had a loving girlfriend. She was with me that night and comforted me. That eased everything really.

Well, that’s all for now. I am not really in the mood of blogging. So see you later. Thanks for reading.