Cafe Batavia

This post is long overdue.

The first time I went to Cafe Batavia in Kota Tua was with someone from work. It was a hot day, on Indonesia’s Independence Day no less, so walking into the blessedly air-conditioned two-story building — one of the few actually being renovated in the crumbling but pretty Dutch quarter — was great. We had pretty good Bloody Marys and I stared at his mildly obscene egg and lamb sausage sandwich as red-and-white fluttered outside the windows.

The second time was when my parents came to visit me in November, and my Dad — fresh from a tour of South Africa — downed two steaks and kept on teasing the waiters. It’s just his way.

The third time was when me and my friends got drunk at Stadium then Exoltis for Adam’s birthday and we stumbled into the street at 7am, tired and hungry. A tall Japanese-American named Sterling who partied with us (bringing whiskey in a mineral water bottle to pass it off as iced tea) had Cafe Batavia open early and I drank another Bloody Mary plus Pocari Sweat, which I promptly threw up when I got home.

The fourth and last time was with my brother, after we looked at a puppet museum across the street and before I lost my wallet at a Deftones concert that night. The food is OK, the decor is kind of crazy but the atmosphere is genteel. Plus, who can beat the men’s restroom, where floor to ceiling mirrors serve as urinals and portals to testicular inspection.

Inside Cafe Batavia’s men’s room — where you pee against this wall, hopefully when no one else is there.

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