Samudra and I met up with my friend Alonda today at Ragusa Ice-cream and it was the perfect day for it as it was so hot and sticky outside. I haven’t visited Ragusa for such a long time, but it’s still as popular as ever with long queues of people waiting for seats and the preservative free ice-cream is delicious! It’s a funny place to visit, as you can order food from the little street vendors out the front but you can’t really stay too long before the line of people are glaring at you waiting for you to move on so they can have their turn. Ragusa has existed since the Dutch colonial era in Jakarta, and was first opened in Batavia in 1932 by two Italian brothers, Luigi and Vicenzo Ragusa. In 1947 they opened the shop we visited today which is also the main ice-cream factory. The old photos on the walls show the place as it was originally, when no Indonesians were allowed inside. They are certainly making up for it now as it is always busy with a high turnover of happy customers.
Across the river beside Ragusa is Istiqlal Mosque so we decided to go back for a visit as it’s also been so long since I last went inside. This is the biggest mosque in Southeast Asia and can hold up to 120,000 people over several levels. It is absolutely amazing to see when it is full during Ramadhan, but today was much quieter, so we sat on the cool marble floor on level four and enjoyed the cool breeze, until Samudra decided to start squealing in happiness and I thought we better quickly leave so as not to disturb people praying on the ground floor.
In the taxi heading home again I was tempted to get out at Monas as there seemed to be so many people out and about and I rarely get out that way these days, but luckily I resisted as Samudra fell asleep quickly after another afternoon of adventure.
I hope you had a happy day wherever you are in the world today.