The heat is crippling and the traffic snarls are more than enough to break your hold on sanity. If only reality was as easy as boarding a flight to paradise but mere mortals have only their daydreams to run to when reality fillips you interminably on the nose. Fortunately, I managed to dodge that last fillip and land myself in a little cosy hideaway in the heart of scorching, slow-moving traffic Jakarta.

Time to lounge and smell the roses at The Cascade Lounge.

Time to lounge and smell the roses at The Cascade Lounge.

Hotel Mulia’s The Cascade Lounge affords one room to breathe. Its capacious space lets your wired-up self unwind and take in the scenery as it unfolds before you, letting your frenetic thoughts zipping through the mind slacken in pace. I stare at the entire room, watching people saunter in and out, wondering what their stories are. Are they lovers? Soon-to-be lovers? Or quondam lovers on the verge of reconciliation? Perhaps a business deal about to be inked? Settled on a comfy corner of the lounge at the back, to the right of the little platform, near a section of the floor-to-ceiling windows, I take a break from the world.

I catch the attention of one of the service crew and in minutes I am sipping a nice cup of cappuccino and digging into the cream tiramisu. I indulge in what I have so little to do nowadays as school nears the end of its year. Reading is one of them – the macabre comes alive again in Edgar Allan Poe’s The Murder of Rue Morgues, which also happens to be the precursor of the detective genre; Antony Barrett’s Caligula is an enlightening and informative look on the infamous ruler; John Steinbeck’s The Pearl is heart-tugging; and the tales from the Brothers Grimm is a light walk back to childhood. Planning comes into play too – where shall I travel to next? What I should I blog about? Which restaurant is the best place to go to next?  Which movie shall I watch?

Indulge in your favourite things and let life grab hold of you again.

Indulge in your favourite things and let life grab hold of you again.

Simply put, my life sashayed in again after being cooped up in the rat wheel for days on end. Suddenly, the cappuccino is robust and energy-boosting. The tiramisu is sweet but not cloyingly so and the din at the lounge is almost non-existent. Everything is rosy and green.

“Hello, me. How have you been?”


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