It’s one reason why I miss Singapore to a certain degree. I can walk down Orchard Road and find a little corner in Starbucks for my caramel macchiato or green tea or green tea frappuccino and let the world pass by. I’m not a real coffee drinker like other people I know but I like the momentary solitude sitting in Starbucks gives me amidst the cacophony of the blender whirring, the cashier shouting out the orders to the barista and the general din of the bevy of people chatting away and the sounds of hand phones while sipping my fave drink.

It’s different in Bekasi, Indonesia. Thank goodness for the one Starbucks at Metropolitan Mall but, unfortunately, the barista experiences a lot of mood swings so the drinks are not up to Starbucks quality (read: watery and bland) . Let’s not forget the smoking customers who have perfected the art of indifference, marring the solitude and purity of the air, and disturbing my peace. The branches in Jakarta, like in Plaza Senayan, are a welcome respite from the dearth of my favorite watering hole, rude smokers and the lackluster array of snacks-on-sale.

The Starbucks at Soekarno-Hatta airport is a good pit stop before heading to the departure lounge despite the warm temperature. I always get a drink before walking down to the lounge to wait for my flight. It’s an idiosyncrasy that I can’t let go – it’s a nice break from the tedium I know I’m heading for in waiting for the flight (delayed flights are not far from common).

A pit stop at the Starbucks at the airport in Bali is a good way to jump start a short weekend getaway especially if you land a few hours after sunrise. There’s no rush to get anywhere anyway so sipping a drink can be a very leisurely activity till you feel you’re ready to climb into the cab and head to your villa.


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