Stumble Into Indonesia's Unseen Places
Submitted by mumunmumun on 15 March 2014 • Blog
“One thing I miss about living in Bandung is the creative atmosphere. Almost every chat ends in an idea to create something. Your friend already had an idea for an app of Bandung night heritage trail,” I explained to Arif Rahman, a prominent Indonesian travel blogger while we were cruising with the new Nissan March. Yes, I miss hanging around with friends, or strangers for that matter, over some cheap cup of so-called coffee and creating something out of nothing at all. In Indonesia, Bandung’s creative community is relatively well known; something I haven’t found as much in Jakarta, yet.
It was probably because, coincidentally, Arif knew the right people and could connect them at the right time. My 12 hours with him reminded me how creative Bandung really is. He pretty much dragged me around town to see what he wanted to see and meet the people he needed to meet. It started as a simple walk to a distro not far from the main Factory Outlet shopping area, the Jalan R.E. Martadinata or commonly known as Jalan Riau. We were supposed stay close within the area, but Arif and I decided to venture off a bit. Jalan Trunojoyo area is known to be home of some of Bandung’s local brands, some of which we love. It’s a joy to see the stores in this area as most of them are well designed and some are, surprisingly, premium class. This street really shows how much Bandung kids put into design, not only with clothes, but also furniture and café’s.
Top: CD of local band, The Sigit. Second row: clothes at a distro with nice display and a local designed chair. Bottom: display of furniture store.
Traveling to another side of the city, we met a few other creative people working in the culinary world, which are still some side creations to their main livelihood. Some created baking goods and some created fun drinks. By my tasting alone, I can say that these items aren’t fooling around. They mean serious business with rich taste and thought out packaging. Although Bandung is already well known as a culinary destination, I’m glad to see the next generation trying to uphold the reputation. Bandung is in good hands. Boy, did we get a fun sugar shot!
Twisting through the night, I was surrounded by people that showed me more of Bandung’s creative magic. With ideas flying around a table, there were items to make, promising brands to be promoted, and relations to be-friend. It was tough to keep up with so many projects thrown at each other, not to mention the ones in my own head.
Clock wise: local brand bag, half eaten chocolate nutella brownies, owner of local brand bag and his pride and joy.
“If you were to choose between a local brand and a famous international brand with the same price, which one would you choose?”
“Local brand,” I easily answered because I really didn’t have the items to compare in front of me. In that split second upon answering Arif’s question, I believed that going local is the best way to help the economy and only a limited amount of people in the world has the same goods that I do. And going local in Bandung looks really good!
By the end of the night, my head was pumped with ideas and possibilities, even about blogging this at 2 a.m. It’s a priceless circumstance that doesn’t come often. I’m thankful to be in this mini creative storm back in my hometown. It hadn’t felt this homey for a long time.