Sunday, August 29, 2010

Bandung and Bogor bikers

All good things must come to an end. We have to navigate on our own again. Our destination was Cipanas, a famous hot spring resort. It was another 300km in 8 hours. We had to endure with the buses and trucks around, we had to look for lunch spot, and we had to wash our faces because the black smokes from the trucks were really thick.

Cipanas was a weekend get away place for the locals because the weather here was cooling and there was a nature hot spring. The room that we stayed had a weird bathtub. They had a never ending water from the hot spring flowing into our bathtub. After the entire dirty ride, it would be a best time for us to relax in the room, watching Japan got defeated by Uruguay.

It was another 70km into Bundung and we have to meet another group, PULSERIAN. Borwo was our host and they paid for our lodging in Bundung. We had a good night out with them and did a small presentation for everyone. The group wanted to host us for more days but I have to reach Bogor on the next day, to meet up with a Singapore friend.

Small presentation to closer friends.

The escort party out of Bandung.

Again, they gathered in our hotel in the morning, some could not escort us out due to work commitment but they managed to take a few hours off just to say goodbye. Kutu, Denny and Arif escorted us all the way to Bogor.

Dandy and Arif.

The 95km took us for 4 hours. Not because of the road condition but the congestion and rain. We stopped for lunch at Puncak Pass and continued towards a link up point 20km away, which took us 1 hour using a major highway.

We waited for Kutu’s friend to bring us into Bogor and it took us another 1 hour to cover 20km before we could finally reach our destination.

Thou the congestion was terrible yet Kutu, Denny and Arif insisted to ride with us, making sure we would arrive at Bogor in safe hands. Kutu left Bogor back home in late night around 1130pm. He had to ride alone in the dark for few hours. Denny and Arif were in 1 bike. They were university students on vacation and they always had last minute plan with very little preparation. What a great adventure. Their style of traveling reminded me when I was in my younger days.

On the next morning, we finally met up with Chunkok, our Singapore friend. He took us to the famous botanical garden and explained to us everything we saw. We also paid a visit to the grave of Olivia, wife of Sir Stamford Raffles.

Chunkok also brought us around the quite village that he was staying and shared a lot of stories with us.

His friend had a big empty warehouse to rent out. It was on advertisement of a few months to look for tenant. Then he realized that his utility bills were very high for the past few months on the empty warehouse. He realized that there were local hawkers setting up stalls outside his warehouse and ‘stole’ electricity from him. Chunkok asked him why didn’t he report the case to the police. This wise business man answered:

If I report to the police, the police would chase the hawker away. Then the hawker would be angry and they will vandalize or burn down my warehouse to show their anger. When my warehouse in vandalized or burned down, I would lost more money.

In the end, this wise businessman paid all these hawkers us$5000 to tell them to go away.

An average secondary school teacher earns us$200.
A bowl of noodles cost us$0.50.

After hearing this story, Sam and I looked at the situation here very differently. We appreciated home.

Chunkok brought us to a rabbit farm.

It was a lazy Saturday. I was half waken up by the mobile phone at 730am and didn’t border to look who’s calling. It doesn’t even matter if the president is calling me. Then it followed by a series of door knock. We were too tired to wake up. In the end, I woke up not because I wanted to wake up but to tell that asshole to stop knocking. It was the owner of the guest house. He said that there were many people waiting for me outside. I looked at the phone, it was Dono.

Dono was from Jakarta. His bike group knew that we were coming and was very eager to meet us. They invited us to go to Jakarta but we rejected a few times. So their mission today was to meet up with us and try to bring us into Jakarta.

Arif and Dandy on extreme left.
Dono came prepared, driving his big car to meet us so that we could put our luggage into his car and go to Jakarta with him. We do not feel comfortable about his plan. The few of them set off from Jakarta at 6am just to drive up here, outside our guest house, have a breakfast with us and a small discussion and ended at noon. Wao!

The journey from Bandung to Bogor was bad enough, not to mention about going into Jakarta with Hope Too.

Sorry Dono, maybe next time I take a flight to Jakarta would be better. At that time would they want to meet me again? I don’t know Dono know what I know. heee…

We spend some time walking around shopping mall, escaping from the usual stuff that we did.

On the day when we wanted to leave Bogor towards Sumatra, there comes the escort party. We didn’t realize that there were so many of them, willing to ride 6 hours with me to the western end of Java and they would ride back to Bogor.

Remember Adrain Low of Sydney, his Singapore friend had a business in Java and yet, he came with his team to sent us off in the 12 hours ride (2 way)... Thanks Al!

We were all tired after the 6 hours ride. The ladies were still in high energy!

Upon reaching the 'hotel'.
The 6 hours ride with them was marvelous. There was a lady biker with us too. When we reached the ferry point, Sam and I decide not to go to Sumatra on the same day as it was late. We heard of locals telling us stories about riding in Sumatra. There would be bandits in the night out there to rob. Sam and I were always on the safe side. We stayed a night in the flimsy lodging next to the port. We showered with ‘black’ water. Yes… black. Again, the room was filled with mosquito.

No comments: