‘Complications make us cross.’

They sure do  Dharma.

And what’s your friend’s name again, it’s Anton, isn’t.

‘No it’s Wanto.’

Can you spell it for me? I say, but I don’t tell him  I’m really tone deaf. Their pronunciation isn’t my pronunciation and that only adds to the cluster fuck of misunderstandings.


Dharma spelled it clearly, his English was above average for  Borneo standards.

That’s right, I said, it sounds like Anton but it’s Anton beginning with a W.

‘No, it’s Wanto, not Anton.’

Anton is the Chinese owner of this cafe.

That explains my confusion.

Complications make us cross, I said to Dharma.

It was such a good line, I wanted to use it as soon as possible.

That two-hour midday sleep had me in another time and darkness. I was dropped off outside a Mc Donald’s with only my computer chords.

It wasn’t a good place to be without a coffee fix,  so I woke up. It was only 3 in the afternoon, time for a quick coffee.

I anticipated the traffic crossing the road in quicker time than expected – put your hand up like a traffic cop, and lip sync, I’m crossing the fucking road – and headed to my local which is across the road from KFC on Jalam Siam.

I managed to knock 1000 Rupiah off the price of the coffee, now I’m paying local prices. There’s progress going on here. It does take time. You aren’t going to get the right price immediately unless it’s an honest coffee shop. And there many of them on this street.

I’ve got three cakes on a  plate. Excuse me, I’m going to pig out on them with my black coffee.


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