What I’m Going to Miss About Living in Indonesia

When I moved to Indonesia in July 2017, I didn’t really know what to expect. I’d only been once before, and that was just for a few days when I was interviewing for the job earlier that year. While I wouldn’t say that I fell in love with living here, after 3 years, I will miss a few things when I move on in June of this year.

My House

Since moving abroad 10 years ago, I’ve solely lived in apartments until moving to Jakarta. Because I was so used to apartment living, I looked for one here, but ended up falling in love with my house, despite the fact that it’s entirely too large for me. What I love most about it is all the windows and the greenery outside. Most people who visit can’t believe this oasis is in Jakarta, a metropolis with a population of over 10 million. Another thing I love about it is that I’ve made it my own. Everywhere else I’ve lived has been fully furnished, which left me with limited options when decorating, and while I had to spend a lot more initially, I was able to pick out the furniture that matched my personal tastes. I just feel at home here.

My School

I’ve really grown attached to the students, families, and colleagues at my school, and I’m definitely going to miss them when I’m gone. I know all of the kids’ names in Primary school, and they are some of the nicest kids I’ve ever met. Becoming a teacher again a few months ago has allowed me to develop relationships with the Year 6 students and our class bond is very strong. I’m going to miss seeing them transition into Secondary school next year. I’ve also developed a few close friendships with colleagues that I’ll miss, but I’m not worried since we will definitely keep in touch!

My Live-in Pembantu (Maid)

As much as I am embarrassed to say it, I have a live-in maid. It’s pretty common to have a maid when you live in Asia, but it’s more common in Indonesia to have a live-in maid. At first, I was really put off my the idea, but once you get used to it, it is hard to give it up. Rohana is such a sweet lady and we have gotten to know each other over the years. When my friend Linner visited last month, she said Rohana and I had our own little language. I think she’s right. We speak in a mix of English and Bahasa, and most of the time, we know what the other one is saying. ๐Ÿ™‚ She cleans, does my laundry, and helps with the cooking. I love that I have my breakfast and lunch ready each morning to take to work so I don’t have to worry about it. I also love cooking when I don’t have to worry about the prep or the clean up. I’m most definitely spoiled and will really miss having her around next year!


This is something that is growing in popularity around the world, but I have to say, being able to order up almost anything and have it delivered is an absolute luxury! There’s the obvious take-out and grocery shopping, but you can also have someone go buy you anything you would ever want (alcohol, movie tickets, random things from any store, etc.) and deliver it to you for a very small fee. In a way I will really miss this, but in a way I won’t, because it makes it way too easy to never have to leave your house!


Going along with the deliveries is Go-Jek, a ride-sharing service with motorbikes and cars, a delivery service, and a services service, meaning I can Go-Jek a massage, a mani/pedi, a car wash or oil change (if I had a car), a cleaning lady, a hairstylist, or make-up artist to my house. This is so convenient when you live in the city with the worst traffic in the world, but again, it makes you so lazy. The fact that these services are dirt cheap makes it even better. I can Go-Jek to work for 10,000 IDR (about $0.75) or order a massage for an hour for 80,000 IDR (about $6.50). It’s heaven!


Being so close to Bali is a real treat! Who else can say they weekend in Bali?!? The fact that Bali is a quick plane ride away (about 1.5 hrs) and is so cheap (about $100 round-trip) makes it easy to get away. Bali is one of my favorite places to visit. It’s so unlike Jakarta. It’s quieter, has less traffic, has delicious, healthy food, is close to the beach, is walkable in many places, and is just so darn cute! I know that even when I move away, I’ll still come back to visit. Sadly, it just won’t be as often.

There are definitely things that I won’t miss about living here, but I’ll save those for another slice!

27 thoughts on “What I’m Going to Miss About Living in Indonesia

  1. wordjourneysite

    There seems to be a lot to love about your life in Indonesia! I adore your house and can imagine what an oasis it is in a hectic life. This is an experience you will treasure for the rest of your life – the good and the bad.
    Where to next?

    1. aggiekesler Post author

      It definitely is. Each place I’ve lived has shaped me in some way and leaves its mark on me. Up next is Korea…more about that in a future slice! ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. elsie

    That house would be tough to leave! I remember when you first posted a tour of your house and I was envious of all the light and great space you had. You have listed some really nice perks of living in Jakarta, I can’t wait to see the other side of the coin.

    1. aggiekesler Post author

      Elsie!! I’ve missed you. ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for visiting and reading. I don’t think I’ll ever live in a house as nice as this one, that’s for sure! Yeah…there are down sides to everywhere.

  3. Stacey Shubitz

    Where are you going/moving to next?

    Your house is stunning! What an oasis inside of a bustling city.

    Life in Indonesia sounds so very different from my life in Lancaster, PA. I cannot even imagine living and teaching abroad. Iโ€™d love to do it, but I doubt itโ€™ll ever happen.

    1. aggiekesler Post author

      I’m headed to Korea this summer and I’m so excited! I’ll be posting about that soon.

      Thanks…I’ve enjoyed making it my own quiet place.

      Life in Indonesia is certainly different than the states in many respects. I always enjoy going home to “normal.” ๐Ÿ˜‰ I am really happy I’ve chosen this life and wouldn’t want it any other way. I do know people who have started teaching abroad after their kids are grown and out of the house…so it’s never too late!!

  4. livinglife816287820

    Yes that is the most beautiful house in such an amazing setting! You have furnished it so tastefully too, will you have to leave all the furniture behind? The perks are great, but I can understand they make you lazy, but that much traffic…it’s a wonder anyone gets anywhere…!!

    1. aggiekesler Post author

      Thank you so much! I’m actually planning on taking some of it with me. It’ll cost me an arm and a leg in shipping, but to be “home” is worth the price. Oh the traffic…it’s the absolute worst!

  5. glenda funk

    Iโ€™d miss that house, too. Love those large windows and all the greenery. Gorgeous photos of all.

  6. Purviben K Trivedi-Ziemba

    Thanks for sharing your joys of living in Indonesia. You made a beautiful home extra serene by being there.hanks for sharing your joys of living in Indonesia. You made a beautiful home extra serene by being there.

    I bet your colleagues and students will miss you. You said, you become teacher again couple months ago. Is it OK if I ask, if your next destination USA or are you moving to another country?

    Best wishes for journey ahead.


    1. aggiekesler Post author

      Thank you…I’ve enjoyed living here. I hope they will miss me, since I will certainly miss them. I feel like you leave a bit of yourself behind everywhere you go. I’ll be moving to Korea in August for a new adventure…more on that soon! ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for stopping by!

  7. mrsstrasser02

    I love that you can be there and now move on to another great place. So often I wished I had done that when I was younger, but I was just too fearful of the unknown.

    1. aggiekesler Post author

      The first time I moved abroad was pretty scary. The fear of the unknown definitely took hold, but once you get over the initial hurdles, it’s a really amazing lifestyle. I’ve experienced things and met people I wouldn’t have otherwise. I can see myself doing this for a very long time. You can still do it, too! ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. carlambrown

    This post was simply blissful. Every photograph leaps from the page, and it exhibits such radiance! From the smiles of the staff and the children to the charming beauty and personality of your home. I’m glad you shared so many pictures. I enjoyed every image and every word. #priceless

  9. karpenglish

    Where will you land next year? Your house has amazing views, and a pool and a lotus pond? Wow! Weekending in Bali sounds amazing! I am glad Go-Jek made your list. I remember you writing about it last year, and for a few minutes I was afraid that you left it out of your post.

  10. isbergamanda

    What a gorgeous house! I have only lived in furnished housing while teaching overseas and Iโ€™ve never been given the opportunity to buy furnishings or pick out my apartment! Haha I am not sure I would know what to do with myself, but I love what youโ€™ve done!

    Iโ€™m only finishing my second year in Indonesia and plan on living here for several years. I love it for all of these same reasons! I think I am underutilizing Go-Jek. Haha

  11. IW

    Hi Ms Kesler!!! We all miss you too! We spent some time reminiscing our times in your class today – From your Y6 class


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