Saturday, September 22, 2012

Dry Season Sucks

Dry season in Jakarta is no fun.  It's been dry here in Jakarta for months now, probably since April.  I thought I would prefer dry season to rainy season with its sudden downpours and subsequent traffic jams, but I'll take rainy season over musim kering any day for the following reasons:

Looks like fall with leaves all over the side of the road, but it's just super dry.

1. It's hot.  Very hot.  Without the rain, there's no break in the heat.

2. The air quality is awful- the rain and wind seem to clear the air somewhat each day during rainy season.  Without it, the pollution just sits there and can be suffocating. 

3. The water in the canals and sewers is really low and thus really stinky.  Really stinky.  And full of trash, as evidenced below.  I think the rain usually washes the trash down to a choke point elsewhere in the city, which I realize is problematic for flooding, but without rain the trash just sits there, which also sucks.

4. Mosquitoes... so many mosquitoes!  Without the rain to wash away their eggs each day, the city is overrun with nyamuk right now.  Tim and I are plagued in our bedroom each night with mosquitoes buzzing in our ears and biting our faces and arms.  Also, many restaurants have been infiltrated, so the mozzies bite your legs under the table, even inside.  Luckily many restaurants keep little packets of anti-mosquito lotion for patrons.

5. I've heard that in other parts of the city, water pressure is down to nothing.  My Bahasa Indonesia teacher says she only has a dribble from the faucet at her house.  We haven't experienced problems yet... fingers crossed.

6. The dry season is wreaking havoc on farmers and their crops, much like it did in the U.S. this year.

7. Forest fires are a major issue on some of Indonesia's other islands, like Sumatra and Kalimantan (Borneo), and the dry season is not helping.  The fires are sending smoke throughout all of southeast Asia, affecting air quality in other cites, like Singapore.

I'm ready to bust out my umbrella again for rainy season.  Bring it on.

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