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Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Jogjakarta Day 2 : Borobudur, Gunung Merapi, Prambanan, Kota Gede, Imogiri, Parangtritis

We woke up at 5am just to reach early at Borobudur Temple for sunrise. It was still dark when we went off and we moved towards Ring Road (2 way straight lanes with separate bike’s lane…kira highway la). With guidance from maps that were provided by the hotel, plus our own masterpiece “A Tour Cookbook-Indonesia An Ultimate Travel Experience” (we produced our own colored 50pages A4-half-sized book, complete with Places of Interest, Summary, Bank Notes, Currency Cheat Sheet, Maps, Travel Details, Plans, Budgets and etc, that really helped us out. Every traveler should prepare one…) we continued our journey. Along the way, the sceneries were so beautiful. Mounts and paddy fields (felt like in Alor Setar), villages and villagers, and ‘bensin’ selling all the way (petrol that was filled in bottles, mainly sold for bikes…banyak gile!). In an hour time, we still haven’t arrived at Borobudur Temple and you guys know what? It’s already sunrise and we endured it at one of the paddy field along the way! It’s only 6am but it was already bright! (Apa kes?)

“Huh dah sunrise ayang…tak sempat dah nak amik gambar on the top of Borobudur Temple tu…” I sadly said to hubby as we really wanted to snap sunrise pictures as in Internet, lot of bloggers said you should experience the sunrise there.

But we managed to reach there at around 7am (gile…kalau kat Malaysia, we were still sleeping like a baby). We parked our car and paid the parking fee. Lot of Pariwisata buses (tour buses) and few visitors started to queue at the entrance and more and more approached. Right after we opened the car doors, 4 street sellers started to encircle us and beg us to buy their products (key-chains, hats, t-shirts and such)!
“Mbak, topinya mbak, topi! Ya bisa murah mbak, ambil dulu mbak…ambil dulu…”

“Mas, kaos mas, pilih mas.” “Mas, ukiran mas, saya bikin sendiri mas, murah ajja mas…ya ambil brapa ajja udah mas”.
“Ngak, ngak mau…ngak, makasih ya, makasih”.

We rejected in a good manner as we know they will try harder and harder coz they need money to live. So we walked away towards the Pura (temple). (Oh god, they still tailed us till half way!). I went to the ticket counter and saw different rates being published for local and foreigner.

“Dua mas” I said.

He requested for Rp18,000 and I paid without any doubt. Then hubby checked on the price and he mentioned,
“Eh, dapat harga local ek?” “Entah…ye kot…” I replied. Yup! Actually we were mistaken as local! (Kira orang Jakarta la coz only city dwellers are capable to libur-libur and belanja-belanja…other than that, diorang tak mampu coz they practice capitalism). Our face and skin color showed! Spoke like them was a bonus! Hahaha!

So we climbed up the temple and stopped half way. Too tired to climb straight! Tinggi! The structural design was full of idols (berhala) and the top part was filled up with dozens of big bell-shaped around it. We continued to climb up and when we were on the top of the bells, we can see Mount Merapi behind it. Too bad it’s already covered by cloud…sigh...but that will be our next wisata (place of interest)! After half an hour taking pictures continuously with or without tripod, we descent (just to let you guys get an idea that the steps were steep, big and slippery…come on, Borobudur is about 1000 years old!) the Pura (temple) as we saw lot of students draw nearer. Along the way to parking lot, there were hundreds of chain-street-stalls that sell same type of souvenirs (I don’t know how they sell their products which EXACTLY the same with other stalls next door and hundreds more stalls ahead, basically the same price…competitive gile!). So I bought 3 sling bags (haven’t decided for whom but of it is for Aisha) and again, key-chains (for colleagues lagi la). When we reached our car, the same street sellers still never gave up asking us to buy their products. (It was the same thing that I’ve bought…so I can’t buy the same thing again and again kan? Yes, pity them but I already have it. Till this one old lady blocked my side of door when I tried to close it and asked me to take ALL of key-chains and pay her as much as I want just to buy her lunch! Kesian gile kay! But I didn’t buy it coz she’s too pushy!) But hubby cannot kowtim already and to show some sympathy to them, he bought ALL wall-wood-pictures (remember, the earlier guy who carved all ukiran by himself? Haa, hubby beli semua!), then we drove out from the place.

On the way out from Borobudur Temple, we stopped by to snap some pictures of Mendut Temple, a 5 storey-square-shaped temple that was covered by an old tree. Nothing special in there but it was listed as one of the places of interest somehow. So we took few shots and blah since we saw someone waiting and approaching to ask for a parking fee (oh god, no more parking fee please!).

So there was Mount Merapi, a dormant volcano that has not exploded for couple of decades. The scenery was so beautiful, breezy, smoky at every side, and cloudy on the top. We got the chance to see it closer but we chose not to. Coz the only way to view it was, we had to climb the opposite hill (ramai gile mat indon, tak tau nape…dating kotdah la nak pegi ke Mount Merapi tu siap masuk tah jalan mana-mana tah. With no guides, maps, locals, memang main belasah je! But we found it!). Plus, AGAIN, we wouldn’t want to spend another thousand of Rupiah just to pay for parking fee! Cheapskate kan? Haha! So we passed by the parking bay (it’s like a playground that has a 2 storey-wooden-tower, and seems like everyone was waiting for their chance to be on top when ONLY someone step down. Huh, tak payah la gitu). After few meters away, we made a u-turn and passed by the parking bay again, and this time, I quickly took out the camera and snapped some pictures of Mount Merapi (at this moment, the ‘jaga’ already look at us macam nak halau but we just ignored him lah). Then, we drove down the hills and believe me, looking beneath; the scenery from atop of the hill was so amazing. You can see the whole Jogja from there (I guess).

We didn’t spare much time at Merapi Mount as the next Pariwisata (places of interest) will be Prambanan Temple. The second largest monument in Jogja. On the way to Prambanan, we had quick lunch at Rumah Makan – a nasi padang outlet. Just typical Indonesian food served here, nothing special. After our hunger restored, we continued our mission to Prambanan. When we arrived at the parking bay (oh not againnn!), we saw lot of street stalls selling souvenirs, basically the same products at Borobudur Temple, but the printing was changed to appropriate name lah. We approached the ‘kasir’ (ticket counter) and I asked for 2 tickets and paid for local charges (woho! We WERE definitely recognized as local! Yay! Cheap tickets!). But this time, we had to pay for extra charge, for camera (dang!)

Hubby later whispered, “Eh we should hide it in the camera bag lah at the first place…”
And I was like…“Ayang, it still looks a lot like we having a CAMERA…!)”.

Hubby believed his Lowepro can’t be recognized as a camera bag, nonetheless. Maybe there is no Lowepro brand available in Indonesia, at least in Jogja? I dun know….

We entered the Prambanan Temple and the weather was a bit cloudy. We walked fast towards the main gate of the Pura (temple) and we saw lots of cubic-shaped-black-stones were everywhere on the ground. Apart from the main Pura (temple), there were bamboo ladders encircling the other Puras (temples). It looked like they were refurbishing it. We read the notice board and it was actually under construction due to earthquake in 2005. They still saving up and that was why they charged for any visits there, just to recover the destruction (owh god, we paid for rebuilding a temple!).

This temple was actually built more than 1000 years ago and for sure, every temple has its own history. A princess was cursed into a stone coz she refused to accept a knight’s wedding proposal (he was noted as a powerful knight that has magical power…tapi mesti tak handsome kot? Sebab tu that princess refused. Hehe.) To reject indirectly, she had ask that guy to built 1000 temples in one night and she even had an agenda behind it. She made sure the activity failed, but it happened that the guy knew all of her plan, which later, he got mad and cursed the girl into a stone (ha amik ko!). So here you go, a half-naked-orthodox-hindu-lady-figure in the temple itself, somewhere at the main gate (but due to the cloudy whether, we afraid that we might being caught in the temple, so we cancelled the plan to see the statue…and believe me, I didn’t expect hubby to recognize the statue when he showed me one of the sculpture on the way out!)

“Ha ni la princess tu.” (Wah, kenal tu! Itu tak cite pasal Ratu Kidul at Parangtritis Beach lagi! I’ll tell you guys later!).

We were not allowed to go out from the main entrance, where they purposely lead the line to the other 3 main temples, Sewu, Brahma, and Vishnu (soooo tiring as these temples were actually viewed from each 90 degres of the main temple). Even though it was a bit humid (sebab nak hujan), the scenery was calm and peace. You can see few street sellers in Javanese-kebaya-attire selling local food and souvenirs along the way. And suddenly, it was raining but luckily I’ve ‘rented’ an umbrella for Rp3000 (see how those locals made money) and hubby bought a Quiksilver fishing hat before we entered this Prambanan Temple earlier.

Not enough with Puras (temples), we drove to another Pura (temple) nearby, which was called Plaosan Temple. But we decided to view it from a distant as there was nothing special inside. Eagerly to see Ratu Boko statue, I forced hubby to drive to King Boko’s Palace to see the Ratu Boko Temple (yeah, another temple…). It was situated few hundred meters from the Prambanan Temple, but unfortunately, we found that it was actually built on the hill! (We had enough with hills…) Lazy to drive over the hill, I accepted hubby’s suggestion to let it go (actually, I was misguided of the story between Ratu Boko with the lady yg kena sumpah tu! I thought Ratu Boko yang kena sumpah, but it wasn’t her. The princess that was being cursed was actually Loro Jongrang. So takpe la…tah sape King Boko and Ratu Boko pun I don’t care lah).

So we continued our journey to Kota Gede, where it lined up the finest silver artworks in Indonesia (as they said). But we didn’t fancy silver products, thus, we just drove by the roads and leaded to Imogiri, the Royal Cemetery. Guided by a map that being provided by our hotel, plus the signboards along the way, we ended up on the top of the hill! (Hills lagi!) We clearly saw the cemetery, but it was FROM the top of ANOTHER hill! (Haaa…camne tuh?) It was actually happened when we tried to skip the parking fee and refused to get a tour guide at the cemetery entrance (sah-sah kena bagi tips nanti kan). So we asked around (locals that lepak depan rumah) and they said that we can view it from this way (sambil menunjuk ke arah jalan satu lagi). How would we know that the road will end up on the other hill kan! Haha! Again, since we didn’t fancy ‘cemetery’ (ceh alasan je ni sebab dah tak dapat sampai kan), hubby grabbed his camera and focused on the cemetery and ‘klik’, we’ve been there! Voila!

Ok, enough with hills and temples, we carried on to the next wisata (places of interest). To the beach! (Here comes the story where Ratu Kidul pujaan hati hubby took place). The beach was known as Parangtritis and its being said that this beach was guarded (and still, I guess) by a beautiful and yet powerful queen, named Ratu Kidul. She was frustrated coz unable to get married with someone she loved, and she later committed suicide by drowning herself into the sea. And started from that day, there will be a celebration to give offering at the seaside, just to stay away from any tragedy (or else, Ratu Kidul will get angry and pasti ada orang akan mati lemas kat situ!). Hubby told me that the hotel which is situated at the cliff in front of the sea has one sacred room that is emptied and will only be occupied when there is an offering being performed every year for Ratu Kidul. And we were told that every King in Jogja HAS to get married to Ratu Kidul first before they married other woman. (Hebat kan? Imaginary wife).

We parked our car (another Rp10,000…dah la nak masuk ke beach ni, ada satu pintu gerbang besar and you kena bayar just to see the beach! Can you imagine if we have to pay just to see Teluk Kemang at PD? Karut kan?). Then we walked by the seaside. Took pictures and spelled our names on the sand (so cliché…). Oh yea, by the way, the sand was black and soft. The waves were big and curled. I can see that visitors just got themselves wet at the edge of beach but no one dared to swim…due to the curse kot (if you see the waves pun, takkan berani la). A lot of people regardless families, couples (uih main air peluk-peluk raba-raba tapi pakai tudung! I can’t imagine how they went back to home with wet baju and seluar), group of friends, you named it, were there along the beach (panjang tau beach ni…from one side to another, I think about 2km kot). And that was why you can see horse-carts and horses waiting for you to ride. To experience, we hired one horse cart to take us from the center of the beach to the left side of the beach, and came back to the place where we took off. (That was considered as one way. If you take centre to left and center to right, it was considered as two ways and the charge will be double).

On the left side of the beach, you can see beautiful cliffs and big floated corals. So damn beautiful! I repeat! It was extremely beautiful till you can imagine, without any local faces around you, you would consider yourself already in New Zealand. Hehe! We have to quickly snap pictures at the corals coz suddenly the waves became so big and wild (we have to be on the cart back coz tak pasal-pasal kang jadi mangsa Ratu Kidul!). With wet jeans and sandals, we jumped on the cart and went back to the center of the beach. We didn’t go to the other side of the beach even though they said that it was the place where Ratu Kidul met her love once, before she died (kira macam cerita Romeo and Juliet la ni, tapi version Jawa, so dia ada magic power skit la). Then we jumped off the cart and surprisingly, we were informed by the boy who leaded the ride, that the horse we rode was actually pregnant for 8 months! (Patutla dia terkentut je along the way…tapi kuda memang kuat…).

After got tanned, (urgh, I purposely didn’t put any sunblock and I don’t know why) we walked to the car and passed by one street hawker that selling rojak (mix fruits with prawn paste). 
“Brapa yah mas?” I asked.

“Du…tiga ribu!” The hawker replied.
Looking at the price which was suddenly being marked up, we laughed and went away. So funny lah when those street hawkers wondering whether they should marked up the price or not when they looked at us, coz they didn’t know whether we were locals or foreigners! Klakarlah! Rojak tu actually dalam Rp1500 je!

So we headed to our hotel using the same ring road and reached hotel around Maghrib (since Jogja was one hour behind, it was still early at that time). We took our bath and again, being served with pancakes and hot teas (marvelous!). Then we waited for the rented car agent to pick up the Avanza. After he took the car, that night, we walked along Prawirotaman Road to see the night life there. This road was actually famous among foreigners but for us, it just a common road in between of hotels, lodges, antique shops and money changers. We checked on the food prices regardless western or authentic Indonesian foods and yeah, expensive but still affordable. After we had dinner at warung (small restaurant) last night, this time, we tried our dinner at one popular cafe called Via-Via café (kira jadi orang kaya skit la malam ni). It served several types of food and they were all delicious. Yummy yummy! With jazzy music and nice ambience, a group of foreigners who were drinking and celebrating something, couple of Chinese girls learning Bahasa Indonesia with one local guy, we spent our final night in Jogja romantically. We later walked out from the café and saw many ‘becak’ guys (trishaw-ers) were there calling and asking us whether we want to ‘belanja-belanja’ or ‘pusing-pusing’ around town like yesterday. We planned to get one of them again for tomorrow, just to kill time before we flew to Bali.

1 comment:

Jati Wijaya said...

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