Fairy Tales in Indonesia

Trip Start Jul 29, 2008
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Indonesia  , Java,
Friday, November 28, 2008

On Friday, the expatriate women's association of Surabaya held their annual christmas ball at the Sheraton.   I had planned to go to this event since I first knew about it.   Firstly, who can say no to a ball.   I didn't worry about the dress or anything because its southeast asia and who really cares what I wear. Thankfully,  one of the fellow science teachers said I could borrow a dress from her.  I got back to my house with a pile of dresses from her and there were even more dresses on my couch from another teacher.  She had laid out some shoes as well.  I felt like these women were my fairy godmothers before the big ball.   All I was missing was prince charming, I hear that he will be around for new years. :)
 I tried on countless dresses.  My choices came down to  between a beautiful black beaded one with a strappy back or a very tropical flowery one.  It had bright flowers on the upper sheer layer and then the bottom layer was orange sequins. I loved it and thought it would be so appropriate for my christmas celebration in south east asia.  I do not know how many times in my life that I will be able to get away with wearing a dress like that. 

The only person that I knew that was going to be at the ball was my boss Larry.  Most of the other teachers felt like the ball was just too expensive to go to.  Thankfully, the head of the elementary school and his wife was there as well.  They were very excited to see me and really made me feel welcomed by introducing me to various people.   All the expats are awesome, I guess this is true for expatriate communities everywhere. Its nice having people understand what you are going through. 
We started the ball  listening to a three piece band in the recreation area.  We were served  appetizers with wine.  I ate pieces of duck out of a ice cream cone, very classy.  I mingled with various people.  The ages of the people are still quite older than me.  But let me say  how nice everyone was!  We finally get a chance to enter the ballroom and it is beautiful.  The ceiling is draped in material and the tables have beautiful centerpieces.  Check out shutterfly for the pictures.  Dinner was wonderful the first plate was filled with little finger foods: chicken on a bamboo stick, tuna and a little salad.  Dinner itself was a steak and yummy potatoes.  I loved the potatoes so much that I exchanged my steak for them.  They were salty small roasted potatoes.  YUM!  
 I sat at table wtih my boss and various other strangers.  Thankfully, the one other women of the table sat by me.  She was a very interesting indonesian women, who was very pregnant.  She looked like she could have had her baby any minute.  We made small talk, the one embarassing thing that I did was someone asked me how long that I have been in Surabaya.  I responded, 4 months and 4 days.   That was probably not the best thing to say with my boss sitting right next to me.  Everyone teased me about it and thankfully we moved on to converstation topics.  During the night, I learned that the three biggest expat groups were cigarettes, embassies, and a dutch shoemaker company. 
They gave away door prizes and then the dancing began.  Firstly, I love to dance.  Secondly, I haven't danced since I have been here.  Thirdly,  I am not a good dancer, most times I look very dorky.   However at the EWAS ball, I was not alone in my dorkiness or love for dancing.  I danced with some mothers of my students all night.  I mean I didn't leave till 2.  I had so much fun!  I never thought going to a ball, where I didn't know anyone, would be such a good time.    It made me feel lucky.   People helped me get dress and let me borrow everything from lipstick to dresses to jewelry.   The expat community is just filled with wonderful people.  It feels like a treat to talk to each one of them, especially because most of them are european.

It doesn't feel real right now.   I just got my visa for the Kingdom of Cambodia and it made things feel like I am just living in a fairy tale.   Hope all of your thanksgiving were awesome.  Please send details!  My next adventure will be cambodia.  Wish me luck, it looks like I should take Malaria medication for it.  So, keep your fingers cross that I don't have any crazy dreams or what not.

Let me tell you that I can't wait to go home in a couple of weeks.  I feel like just going home is like christmas morning. I can't wait to see everyone.  
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