Say Hi To KLTR Coffee Roasters!

Finally the owner of Koultoura, which has been one of my favorite coffee shop, decided to bring their coffee madness to the center of Jakarta! With a nicely revamped concept, they introduced a different name, KLTR Coffee Roasters, which was opened for public in August 9th. While Koultoura has always been a nice casual brunch & coffee spots for family and friends, KLTR embodies a more serious, classy and exclusive ambience that is suitable for the business people working around the area.

Located at Apartment Pavilion Retail Arcade, Jl KH Mas Mansyur Kav 24, Jakarta, KLTR Coffee Roasters is ready to welcome you with their fine selection of great foods and coffee! I got to try most of their menu during the soft-opening and the highlights for me are: the Beef Yakimeshi (with poached egg and truffle essence), Pork Ragout, Pork Ham (with scrambled egg croissant), and the French Toast (maple pork bacon with whisky ice cream)!

If you’re looking for a nice spot for lunch meeting, or you happen to work around Sudirman area, visiting KLTR Coffee Roasters this week should be a priority!

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Pan Seared Barramundi

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Crab Cake

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Beef Yakimeshi

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Pork Ragout

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Pork Ham

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Salmon Iberico

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Two Stack Pancakes

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French Toast

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Strawberry Yoghurt

 

Write to you later,

HG. (@gersonhenry)

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Congrats, Joe!

Price of Passion.

I still vividly remember my parents’ disappointed face when I told them I wanted to pursue my passion in writing for my college major instead of business major.

It was not a pretty sight.

The loneliness of being the only Asian among Australians in the class because Art degree, let alone Creative Writing major, was far from popular among my peers. Oh the frustration, when I had to quit my writing job in a magazine that I actually loved doing because the paycheque was far from ideal and had to look for other career opportunity instead.

I buried my writing dream since then for five years, as I started to work purely for good money by running my own business in fashion.

I thought I was fine living with a dead dream.

Until not too long ago I found myself completely, utterly, broken.
I was hopeless.  I was helpless.
My soul was weary.
The future is nothing but a fog.
Unfathomable dead of night that this small mind failed to comprehend.

Pursuing a passion has its price to pay.

As for me, it was depression.
Not the “OMG my boyfriend broke up with me, I feel sooo depressed” kind, but diagnosed-by-psychiatrist-and-she-prescribed-me-with-an anti-depressants-so-I-won’t-turn-suicidal-kind.

There were days when I had to swallow that tiny pill just to give me the strength, to get me out of the bed and go to work. When I woke up I wished the day would end already, so tomorrow will come and I will finally be done feeling this empty.

In that state of mind, I kept telling the universe,

“I know I’m not a child anymore and I need to grow up,
but don’t make me a dreamer if you’re just gonna crush it with harsh reality.”

I was artistically heart broken, because the creator in me wasn’t able to create.
I had some success in my business, but I was far from being genuinely happy.
People who just knew me recently, would never know the wordsmith side of me.
Because I never show them.

Now more than ever, the world tells you to pursue your passion.
“Do what you love, and you’ll never have to work a day in your life,” they said.

But guess what, you actually have to.

Maybe your true passion isn’t making a lot of money, but the bill needs to be paid.
Last time I checked, groceries can’t be exchanged by passion nor big dreams.
Traveling and taking Insta-worthy pictures costs you.

Pursuing a passion is hard work.

Working your arse off day and night, doing everything you can, chasing every opportunities like you chase the wind, while waiting, for that door to finally come bursting open, for your teenage dream to finally come true, it can get mind-numbingly discouraging.

But after being molded for so long in darkness, imprisoned by the uncertainty, when the time is right, the light in you will shine bright.

If you prove yourself to be FAITHFUL in LOVING what you were entrusted to DO, even if it wasn’t the ideal job that you had in mind growing up, soon enough the universe will reward you with

the right people, 
right place, 
right time,

and you will be able to DO what you LOVE.

Start with a small step.
Start with what you currently have in your hands.
Dare to hope again.
Dare to feel again.
If you’re like me, dare to write again.

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Dream on my dearest,

S. (@sashatjie)

 

 

An Interview With Greys Polii: The Admirable Story of Pursuing Passion with Perseverance.

The girl who will be leaving 20something season in the next few weeks have been a friend of mine probably since 2009 or 2010. Sharing the same pride of being heirs of Minahasan (one of the tribes in Indonesia, located in North Sulawesi) blood, was one of the things that made our friendship flows quite naturally.

Greys Polii (Gel) has always been kind-hearted, easy going and very humble person, even though she was already a star in the national sports field, when we first became friends. From the first hang out to following each other on Twitter, and even until she finally won her first Gold Medal and ranked Number 2 in the Badminton Women’s Doubles World Rank, Gel remains as humble as ever. Nothing has changed except now that she is more mature and wise in handling challenges. That is why I decided to feature her and get some worth-sharing insights that hopefully could enrich your twenty-something journey.

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TPOB20: Who is Greys Polii in your own eyes?
Gel: 
Greys Polii career-wise she is a very ambitious and strong-willed woman who will give 200% focus and energy to make sure she got what she wants. But at the same time, she knows when and how to rest. For her, working and resting  must go hand-in-hand. In daily life, she’s a very sociable person, easy to make new friends and have high level of curiosity. She loves to learn from other people’s stories.

TPOB20: The question “What do you do” would be irrelevant to you, as most people, especially Indonesians must have heard about your astonishing achievements in Badminton. So, why don’t you share the story of how did you get into this career path.
Gel: 
Haha.. yea, there’s nothing interesting about “What I do” because I spend my days practicing and traveling for championship. I don’t have much time flexibility to do anything else outside of badminton. I’ve spent my whole life living at the dormitory with other badminton athletes, and only got to meet my family and friends during weekend or holiday.

I started playing badminton since I was only a 5-year-old kid. My mom, who was a tennis player, started to introduce me to both sports, but then I loved badminton more than tennis. We even moved from Manado (the capital city of North Sulawesi) to Jakarta when I was 8 to join a club. I remember she challenged the 8-year-old me whether I want to be a badminton player or not, if yes then we have to move to Jakarta so that I can get more serious in preparing myself to be an athlete.

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Three years later, when I was 11, I decided to get more serious in badminton and started to live in the dormitory. It was a total game-changer for me when I got separated from my Mom, which forced me to grow up independently. For me it was like the real moment where I said to myself, “This is it…” When I was 14, I started to wonder about my true calling and purpose. I realized that my life and talent is not only about being a world champion, but there’s gotta be something bigger, which is to be the best at what I do in order to inspire and bless other people.

At that moment I also had to choose which category (Singles, Doubles, or Mixed Doubles) of badminton that I want to focus on. Everyone I know (friends, family, coach) encouraged me to play in Singles or Mixed Doubles category, yet I was so convinced that I’m meant for Women’s Doubles category. When I told them that I chose to focus on Women’s Doubles, they considered my decision as foolish because Indonesia’s Women’s Doubles team haven’t won anything. China have been dominating the Women’s Doubles category for 20 to 30 years. It would be a lot easier and faster for me to become successful to play at Singles or Mixed Doubles. Although everyone I know was against my decision, I decided to continue and believed that I could make a history in this particular category.

TPOB20: How did it go? Did you ever change your mind or regret your decision?
Gel: Although the process and journey was really tough and challenging, I had never regretted or changed my mind about it.

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TPOB20: Tell us more about it. What was your biggest challenge, or your lowest point in pursuing your dream?
Gel: 
Well, 2012 was the lowest point in my life. I was 25 at that time. After 11 years of working hard and longing for a breakthrough, which is to be the first in Women’s Doubles, life decided to turn its back on me. I was disqualified at the Olympic Games for something that my partner and I didn’t do. We were accused of playing dirty in the Olympic Games and the saddest part was that we had to submit to the International Olympic Committee. The government apologized to us for not being able to help us out of the situation despite of the fact that we were not guilty. The IOC insisted that we had to bear the consequences otherwise Indonesia, particularly Badminton won’t be included in the next Olympic Games.

It was an utterly devastating experience. I felt like I’ve climbed way too high for 11 years only to be dragged down and hit the solid bottom. Somehow I lost focus and felt like the dream that I’ve been pursuing with high hopes and perseverance was totally unreachable. As disappointed as it was, I decided to quickly move on. I refused to give up and lose hope, and kept on trying until the promotion finally came in 2014, which has changed my life forever. Together with my partner, Nitya Krishinda Maheswari, won the Gold Medal at Asian Games in Korea, and we ranked number two in World Women’s Double.

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TPOB20: What are your work values that brought you here?
Gel: Perseverance and strong determination. I’ve made so many mistakes, but that shouldn’t stop me from getting back up every time I stumbled.

TPOB20: What kind of thing disturbs or angers you the most?
Gel: Dishonesty. Every one has a problem and past that they have to deal with, but as humans we need to learn how to be bold. Once we live freely in the open, being honest and transparent about our lives we gain freedom. Fear could not conquer us. People who are dishonest can’t enjoy a free live, because fear will sooner or later haunt them.

TPOB20: What kind of activity do you do to refuel your creative tanks?
Gel: 
Uhmm.. I do a lot of stuff in my spare time because I have high level of curiosity so I keep wanting to try new things: reading books, learning how to play a guitar, keyboards, taking a diving lesson, mount climbing, learning about public speaking, and other languages like English and Mandarin.

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TPOB20: What would you do when you stop playing badminton? 
Gel: Being an athlete in Indonesia is not easy. Even though we have sacrificed and gave everything for our country, once we stop our duty we are on our own. We need to plan for our lives if we want to live a life with financial freedom once we retired. That’s where I want to involve myself in after retirement. I want to help educate the next generation of athletes how crucial it is for them to manage their income, to challenge their way of thinking so that they could plan ahead, and not only live for the moment.

TPOB20: Now that you have won a gold medal, what would be your next big dream to pursue?
Gel: Definitely winning gold medal on a higher level, for example at the Olympic and becoming a world champion. Or, perhaps getting the first rank, because currently my partner and I are in number 2 of world rank.

TPOB20: Lastly, now that you are about to leave 20s, what is the perks of being 20 to you?
Gel: Hmm.. what we do in our twenties will affect our lives in our thirties. What we do in our thirties will affect us in our forties. And so on… That’s why it’s important for us not to live carelessly, because what we do today will determine the quality of our lives in the next season. I’m grateful that I have found my purpose and passion long way before I hit 20. By discovering my purpose, I now have a fulfilled life and clear direction of where I’m going.

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She closed our conversation with a simple encouragement for you who is on the run of pursuing your passion, particularly in sports: “Give the best of you in every thing that you do, especially in sports. Give 1000% focus and energy. Don’t pursue your passion and dreams half-heartedly because you will never be able to achieve it.”

Write to you later,

HG. (@gersonhenry)

 

Postcard from Sumba: Keeping the Child-like Wonder Alive

What is growing up?

Really, what is it? Nobody really knows what it means and school does not really mention anything about it in the curriculum.

Is it about making more money? Is it about being responsible? Is it about getting married and having kids?

Everyone is entitled to his or her own definition of growing up. I happen to find my own definition during my recent trips to Aussie and Sumba. Without trying to disrespect anyone’s definition, this post is made for the sole purpose of cognitive sharing and discussion.

To me, growing up means taking more adult responsibilities without losing your child-like wonder.

Read that line one more time before we move on to the discussion.

You’ve seen it all the time, everywhere. Kids who just wanted to be kids but end up losing themselves in the process to adulthood. Is growing up really that mundane? I believe in working hard, getting recognition and earning money for my future family. I call that being responsible. But IMHO, the biggest challenge is not about getting all of those. The biggest challenge is keeping your child-like wonder alive in the midst of growing up.

That’s why I travel out to the wild and to the outdoors. Where my inner child could run free and breathe without being suffocated by the air conditioner in my office cubicle.

That was why HG and I created this blog anyway.

I guess my challenge to you today is pretty much the same. Will you be willing to get out of your seat and explore the wild to keep your child-like wonder alive? I hope these photos of kids from Sumba will help you remember how much alive we used to be when we were kids. But hey, it’s never too late to live the life you always wanted.

Keep exploring,

DR. (@demasryan)

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Arrival.

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Playground.

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Met these two girls on the top of Bukit Wairinding.

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They were so playful.

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A little too playful until one of them got hurt.

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Bukit Wairinding on a golden hour.

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No gadgets, just whatever the found on the field.

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Walakiri Beach, a playground for all.

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Crystal clear water.

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The softest sand I’ve ever stepped on.

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She was so passionate in what she created.

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He was just playing while waiting for his dad, a fisherman, to come back to the shore.

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Chilling by the beach.

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Sunset view from Walakiri.

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One out of many pre-wedding photoshoot sessions that I encountered.

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Into the wilderness.

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A school in the wilderness.

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Rayhan who bit my finger.

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The fourth generation of Sumba. He wasn’t even sure of his own age.

 

Hello Sunday, Til’ We Meet Again.

As someone who works 9-to-5 from Monday to Friday, letting go the warm embrace of Sunday and everything that it has to offer could be tough sometimes. But, I didn’t have much of an option, right? Unless I have this super power to freeze time or extend it just for a little bit longer, then leaving Sunday behind won’t be much of a problem.

That is why I always make sure I had the most recharging weekend, which is mostly spent either by sitting at a coffee shop and reading a book, or trying out new places while having tons of laughter, exchanging stories with my favorite bunch.

Just a few weeks ago, I stumbled upon this homey desserts place called Hello Sunday. Totally a love at first sight for me simply because it has alfresco area with white walls and big window panes! Every blogger would love this kind of place because it makes your “I gotta take photos for my blog post this week” MUCH easier.

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Located at Jalan Pangeran Diponegoro No. 21, Menteng, Center Jakarta, Hello Sunday is the place that makes you excited during the weekdays because you know Sunday is just around the corner! The name itself gives you this perspective that Sunday is no longer something that you waved goodbye, but something that you look forward to, like an old friend whom you can’t wait to see!

The beverages and appetizers taste surprisingly good. With plenty of new coffee shop, restaurant and desserts spots opening sporadically like every week, somehow not all new players could maintain the quality of their products. Sadly, most only offer comfy ambience with bad service and plain-tasted food and drinks.

What’s even more interesting about this place is that you can get local-flavored ice cream in cone or waffle with different toppings, and sauces with very cheap price, about IDR 30k.  So I ordered Es Teler mixed with Gula Malaka flavors ice-cream, with original-flavored cone, and on top of it all, I picked pistachio crackers and almond-cashew crackers as my topping. Yums!

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Iced Black Coffee

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Gula Malaka ice cream served with choco chips waffle and choco sauce, topped with almond cashew crackers and coconut jellies

And of course, with that “oh-so-instagenic” surroundings you just have to get a nice OOTD photo for your Instagram. Amen?

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Write to you later,

HG. (@gersonhenry)

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Postcards From Belitung: A Collaborative Trip with SanaSiniYo.

Last May, I had a 4-day trip to this small island at the bottom of Sumatra, which marked my first time ever stepping on the ground of the west part of Indonesia. It was quite an impulsive decision to book a ticket and fly to Belitung, just because I stumbled upon this amazing Instagram feeds of @SanaSiniYo only a month before. SanaSiniYo is a Trip Planner, founded by two uber-friendly 20something guys, Timothy and Erick. These guys are always ready to accompany you exploring Belitung with very affordable budget. Plus, they area also great in taking good photos and coloring them into Instagram-approved posts!

Well, I’m not gonna go into details about my 4 days 3 nights trip to Belitung in this post. Here’s 9 beautiful photos that hopefully could inspire you to call your friends and experience the perks of island-hopping in Belitung!

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Mount Kubing’s Infinity Pool.

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Barefooted.

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Just my favorite color palettes. 

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I’m literally in love with Indonesia’s shades of blue.

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The solid watch tower at Lengkuas Island.

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The only green I love besides Broccoli. 

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A dip during the golden hour.

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Too pretty not to be captured.

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Kaolin Lake.

 

Write to you later,

HG. (@gersonhenry)

Sumibi Restaurant: A Delightful Japanese Luncheon Experience.

Have I told you that 2017 has been one of the best year so far simply because it has plenty of public holidays? Yeap. After exploring Dieng and Belitung during the last two public holidays in April and May, I decided to spend this one (in June) to have a quality time with my two best friends.

Now, to complete this particular day off, my friends and I decided to have our all-time comfort foods (read: sushi and other Japanese cuisines) for lunch. Normally, Sushi Tei or Genki Sushi would be enough for us. But, since it was a holiday, we decided to try something new. And so we picked Sumibi Restaurant!

Located at the Ground Floor of One Park Residence, Gandaria, this Japanese restaurant offers wide range of authentic Japanese foods and other fusion dishes as well. Many people who have visited Sumibi testified that they always visit this restaurant when they miss visiting Japan. The foods taste pretty similar to the ones you can find in Japan, probably because the owner and executive chef (Yusuke Tsuchiya) is a Japanese.

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I had a hard time deciding what to order. Every single page of the menu looks so seducing. After flipping the menu pages back and forth we ordered Yaki Tomorokoshi Ama Sho-Yu Parmezan Cheese (grilled sweet corn, soy sauce, parmezan cheese) and Takoyaki Croquette for appetizer. While for the main course we ordered Crispy Salmon Roll, Spicy Tuna Roll, California Roll and Chicken Nanban. Out of those, the highlight was the grilled sweet corn, takoyaki, and crispy salmon roll, and chicken nanban!

Honestly, we would order and try more food. But, since there were only the three of us, it would not be wise to order more foods as it would be wasted. Once we finished them all, we even had no more room for desserts. Sigh. I would definitely come back to try the other dishes.

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Isn’t this little guy adorable?

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I didn’t get to roam around the restaurant to capture its ambience, mostly because I was so bloated to move. Besides, I prefer to play with one of my favorite nephews, Joel and took some good photos with him. If you’re a real Japanese foods aficionado, this weekend you must put Sumibi in your go-to list! Who knows we might bump into each other, right?

Write to you later!

HG. (@gersonhenry)

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Glasses: Karamata.ID; Striped Shirt & Shorts: H&M; Tee: Uniqlo; Shoes: BNV; Watch: Hypergrand