Indonesian Expatriates Forum (IEF), created in January 2008, has been doing very good. Bugilsnews puts IEF’s widget which shows the list of articles we have published on their website (they also put a link to my personal blog there – big thanks to Bart and the team – perhaps because I constantly promote Bugil’s, Cazbar and EP!), and with their perpetually growing number of readers and loyal fans, having IEF’s link on their site will certainly boost IEF’s popularity! Several bloggers also have IEF link on their blogs, like Jakartass (the most popular English blog according to Indonesia Matters), and my blogbuddies like Rima and Therry.
IEF also has gathered almost 50 blogs of Indonesian expats and returned expats around the world. (I will elaborate the term ‘returned expat’ later in a different posting). And the number is growing, slowly, but sure. To me, personally, just by looking at the countries that Indonesians live in, is a proof that we would be able to find Indonesians practically everywhere. Not only in popular countries like USA, but also in places like Angola (Nadia), Norway (Mulia and Alief. Well, Alief lives in Bergen, a quite big city, but Mulia lives much further up north in Tromsø, which wouldn’t be the first choice to many Indonesians to live!), Hungary (Sherwin), or a place with only 70,000 inhabitants like Antibes (Maya). Interestingly though, not many Indonesian bloggers listed in IEF live in Asia (especially in South East Asia) or Australia, compares to a quite significant number of those who live in Europe. Maybe because those in Asia don’t experience the culture shock as big as those who live in America and Europe. For example, what kind of shock you might possibly have when you move to Singapore except that you have to learn how the tube/subway works. Maybe because those in Australia fall into two categories: students (who have no time to write blogs due to lots of assignments and partying) and permanent residents (who don’t consider themselves as expats). Or maybe it is a matter of coincidence, that now IEF has listed Indonesian bloggers live in America and Europe more than Asia and Australia. I wouldn’t be surprise thought that sometime in the future we will have an Indonesian blogger in Antarctica, Siberia, or Sierra Leone!
IEF also has received and published several articles from expat bloggers. So far we have learned about The Philippines, Belgium, Tromsø, and Denmark. We would love to read about other countries or other expat experiences, so please do not hesitate to send your articles to IEF.
I have high hopes and lots of ideas for the continuity of IEF. And with tremendous supports from all of you, I hope IEF can be a first-stop resource for Indonesian expatriates.