Jakarta is a polluted and crowded metropolis, located in the tropical country of Indonesia. The weather never changes; heat and humidity are year-round. One does not have to look far to find people and places in great need. Many shacks lay aside the continuously traffic-jammed streets. However, In Ponduk Indah, rows of elegant homes sharply contrast the rest of the city. Swimming pools are standard in most every house. Roman columns, statues, and lavish gardens are other common adornments. Each household has guards and a driver, or two. Of course, this does not include the extra help most people hire, including, housecleaners, cooks, and gardeners. No need to say that this is the richest area of Jakarta; most expatriates live there. Some are not as humble as one would hope, especially about the great disparity between their lives and the average Indonesian.
Though there are several international schools, Jakarta International School (JIS) is the largest, and furthermore one of the largest international schools in the world. As far as academics go, the school is really an International Baccalaureate school, not much emphasis is placed on the American AP program. In America, high schools are known for cliques; however, this school could rival the worst of them. Drinking, smoking, and drugs are common and easy to obtain, not to mention cheap. Not often does a person abstain from all three. Materialism and superficiality also are common themes there. Many Asian students attend JIS and are noted for being incredibly nice and extremely hard working. While it is an unforgiving environment, it is possible to find some very kind people at JIS.
People's opinions on living in Jakarta vary. Being able to travel to other areas in Asia is probably the best part of living there for most. For me at least, it is the place I have to finish high school, and I will be more than happy to move on. While some people do love it, everyone who spends their time here eventually moves on.