Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Maintaining tradition in a modern world

It was a bit of an effort to get to Kampung Naga from Tasikmalaya. Although it is on the main road connecting Garut and Tasikmalaya the bus companies coming from Garut stop at a town called Singaparna which is about 15-20km before Tasik. There are, however, the smaller buses, called ELFs (pronounced "elip" because Indonesians don't have the letter "F" in their alphabet, except a few words from Arabic) which don't run from the main Indihiang Terminal, but from the Pasar south of the kota. Finding out this information took considerable time, not helped by ojek drivers offering their services, but finally someone put me on a #18 angkot from the terminal to the pasar and I jumped on an ELF bus to Garut. 3 hours later we had travelled the 40km to Kampung Naga...

Kampung Naga is a village which has decided to keep it's traditional way of life. Although Moslem, they have maintained their more ancient laws and traditions as well. They still have a "king" and continue to live in traditional bamboo houses with thatched roofs, without electricity or inside plumbing. The houses have changed a little though, with glass windows installed and perspex sunlights inserted in the thatch to provide lighting. Some also have TVs, black and white ones that run on car batteries. But not a mobile phone in sight!!

The village is full, with 110 houses sitting cheek by jowl with each other and no room for new buildings. It's a communal way of life where those doing better provide for those doing it hard, and the local men have a fire warden role making sure that there are no errant fires that would have the entire village up in flames in minutes. Since everyone cooks on open hearths inside their houses, this is indeed a really important consideration.

With the village full, the house gets handed down to the youngest child, in fact the youngest girl, as inheritance is matrilineal in Kampung Naga. All the boys and older kids have to find their own way, either through marriage or moving out of the village. Many do head to the big cities for work or study, as employment opportunities locally are limited, but enough seem to stay to keep the village active and thriving. It seems there's little strife or tensions within the village, I guess those who choose to stay accept the limitations and way of life fully.

It's not a bad way of life really. They grow rice (2 harvests a year) for personal use plus sell their excess, they have chickens, sheep and goats, and have fish farms with ginormous goldfish in them. The fish get all the rice hulls to eat and are only used for ceremonies and such so that's probably why they get so big. Plus the communal bathrooms are perched over the fish ponds....

I know all this because I took a guide. It seems only appropriate to provide some money to the village for gawking at them and their lifestyle. I don't think I would have felt comfortable seeing the place without one, plus it gave me the opportunity to go inside a house and learn about their lifestyle.

I then took an ELF back to Tasikmalaya, which took a considerably shorter time and this one actually went to the Indihiang Terminal, which meant one less angkot required to get back to my hotel.

Tomorrow I head to Wonosobo and on to Dieng. This will be the beginning of revisiting some places from last Java trip. Remember, Dieng rocks!!

A few more photos here

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Time to go see a volcano, or, a little camping in the woods

I hated Cipanas.

It started with the hotel tout the moment I got off the angkot, whom I ignored. I wandered around looking at unimpressive room after unimpressive room, with asking prices over $20 a night. I really just wanted a cheap room, not a TV and a pool to swim in. Seriously, swimming pools, even warm ones, are just not my thing.

I found a cheap room, but the price would be going up on the weekend, so I just paid for one night. The room itself was pretty dirty and the only reason I didn't leave was because I met a North American couple staying there who said they'd looked elsewhere and hadn't been able to find anything cheaper. And I was tired. So I had a warm wash and headed out for dinner. Sate Goat that was undercooked, tasteless, and expensive. Strike two...

It was Friday night and the place was heaving. People were letting off firecrackers in the street and it was plain noisy. No quiet little spa resort, but noisy tourist trap. Really not my sort of place.

Next morning I got up early and wandered around looking for other housing options. The Americans were right, even places without pools were asking 300,000Rp and more. I wandered around, finding some back streets through the kampungs, and started to think the place wasn't so bad after all. And anyway, I had my period, so always a good idea to not do anything adventurous on my heavy days. Hahahahahaha!!!

I ask at the hotel if I can stay another night, to discover that the hotel is now fully booked for the weekend and I have to leave. They tell me that I can get a room for 200,000Rp (same as what I would have paid at the hotel I'm being kicked out of) at a hotel next door, but the person I need to speak to is still sleeping and I need to come back later. That seals the deal, I don't like the place, time to leave.

I take an angkot into Garut and sit at the terminal drinking an avocado juice - seriously folks why isn't this a drink in Australia it's freaking delicious - and decide my next move. I have camping gear, stove, fuel, even food though I could do with a little more, why don't I go camping?? I jump on a bus to Cisurupan (15,000Rp) and am immediately attacked by the ojek mafia when I arrive. I take refuge in a nearby Alphamart and stock up on noodles, biscuits and water. When I walk outside to repack my supplies into my backpack I meet a couple of young fellows also going camping, who ask if I want to join them. Some sort of negotiation with the ojek mafia goes on, I think along the line of "if the bule pays this much we'll give you boys a cheaper price" (it's pretty easy to read shady body language), but I wasn't going to make a big deal. I ended up paying 40,000Rp, the boys say they did too but a bit of my money seemed to get passed on to the other two drivers, and a couple of Jakarta lads we met say they paid 30,000Rp, which is probably the correct price. But one has to keep these things in perspective. 10,000Rp is one dollar peeps!!

So, the mountain I am off to camp on is Gunung Papandayan. This is a very active volcano, with steaming geysers, bubbling streams of hot water, hot vents spewing sulphur, quite spectacular actually. I check in at the post, fill in the book and the paperwork and pay the foreigners entry fee of 15,000Rp per day, then go find the boys. We got left behind on the way up the hill when my ojek's bike overheated and the engine cut out. A bit of water thrown on the carby cools it down and we are away.

Soon we are heading up into the volcano crater and I remember something rather important. It's the first day of my period, something I often euphemistically call "stuck pig day", and I haven't been to a toilet for a few hours. And there are no more toilets to be found till my return down the mountain tomorrow. Let's just say I'm feeling a little uncomfortable...

Then I recall a comment made by Robyn Davidson in her book "Tracks", about her trip across Australia with camels, where she describes just letting that sort of stuff go. OK she was in the middle of nowhere and I'm on a track with a whole bunch of other trekkers, but it's really the attitude that counts. I have no idea how much of a mess I am in, but I decide to cease caring. Eventually we find a stream and I leave the boys to rest whilst I undress, wash my heavily soiled clothes and readjust, so to speak. Nobody comments on my strategically soaking wet pants when I rejoin my companions, we simply keep trekking. And I am saved for now.

We pass through a gap in the mountain and arrive at the first camping site. No-one actually camps here, but you pull out your paperwork to fill your details into another book and pay some money, I think they are camping fees. I pay 5000Rp, the same as the boys. We then track around the mountain even higher up, overlooking the volcano below. The clouds are settling in by now, so we move smartly through to the camping site, which is already heavily occupied with large groups of people. There are tents everywhere, and many people have quite a lot of gear with them. There's musical instruments too, so all evening and into the night we can hear various groups singing. At one point I think I even heard Hotel California! Adele's also very popular.....

The boys, Robby and Becek, and I quickly find a campsite and set up camp before the rain sets in. We are only just in time, and I join them in their tent whilst I boil my billy for a nice warm cup of coffee. Mmmm...

I've brought along a stove that uses white spirit, what we call meths at home. Here it required quite a bit of effort to find because you can't find it in any old hardware store like you would at home. I'd been told by Thammy (the Carita guy) that I could get alcohol at a dispensary, or apotek, but when I went to one in Bogor I discovered they just sell up to 70% for cleaning purposes, and the guy there didn't have any idea where I could get some. I asked in a few more shops, tried to find some info on the internet, but wasn't getting anywhere. Then one lady in a shop suggested somewhere near the markets, but that they would be closed on the weekend. Since I still had my cold and was staying a bit longer in town I made one final effort to find some. Short answer: go to a paint shop. That's Toko Cat (pronounced "chut") and ask for Spritus. It's 7000Rp for a bottle. Easy once you know how...

The rain settled in for the night. I cooked up some noodles and showed the boys my windsurfing video and a few photos from home, then I headed back to my hammock and to bed. It was cold so, after a little experimentation, I ended up placing my space blanket between my sleeping bag and the hammock to insulate me from the cold below. My clothes were damp from the rain, but the vest, the cycling arms, and my wool t-shirt over the top off all that, gave me enough warmth inside the sleeping bag to sleep fairly well. Dry socks helped too. The hammock kept me much dryer than the poor boys in their tent, who woke up to find themselves sleeping in a puddle.

The rain cleared by morning and an early rise saw some blue skies before the clouds gathered again. There's a climb up to the summit and a field of edelweiss, but I wasn't keen, what with the clouds having rolled in again and the fact that I had a little unfinished womens business. The campsite, by the way, had a good water supply, so I was easily able to attend to my needs. This is definitely a situation where a Divacup is a much better option than tampons or pads. The boys were initially keen to do the climb, but a look at the clouds rolling in changed their minds and we all packed and headed back down the mountain, where we had to show our paperwork again and get crossed off as having returned. I even met another westerner, a French guy who'd also camped the night, but I'd not met him up there, what with the rain and the crowds.

Back down at the bottom I took the opportunity to use the ladies before we jumped on ojeks again. The boys are from Tasikmalaya, and since that's my next stop, I jumped on the same buses as them. They gave me a hotel recommendation, and a bunch of places to see, told me prices of transport around town, then we parted ways. More wonderful friendly people in this great country.

I'm staying at a hotel 13km north of the city centre. Even though it's on the main highway and also near the train line it's not that noisy and it's not right next to a mosque!! It's cheap (100,000Rp/night), it's clean, and the service is good. It's only 3000Rp into town on an angkot, so I'm staying a few days to wash the clothes, dry the camping gear, and see a few things round about.

The rest of the volcano photos are here.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Another mythical place revealed

Remember when I went to Shangri-La? A town in China said to be the place that a novelist made up in a novel he wrote in a rainy flat in London? Well today I visited another mythical place: Atlantis!

I'm always amused by believers. People who decide a particular thing and then find the evidence to prove their belief. Of course any evidence that disproves their belief is immediately discarded as manufactured or corrupt. A typical, rather dangerous, example is the anti-immunisation lobby, but the Atlantis believers, well I think they're pretty harmless.

So, Plato writes about this great lost civilisation of Atlantis. Apparently it's not fiction, it's fact. Hmm... Then in 1914 or thereabouts, some Dutch people find this ruin on a hill in Cianjur region and discover it's quite old. Megalithic old. The locals, of course, have known about it for eons, and it's considered a bit sacred by them, but in general, this place just stays hidden, and continues to not be that well known about outside the region. Then recently some further research is done, including some core sampling, that identifies that the site is even older than first imagined. Maybe as old as.....Atlantis!! Yes, you can see the leap of faith here can't you?

I'd heard about Gunung Padang from my internet surfing, because it doesn't feature in guidebooks. It is, however, well known locally. Big signs at the highway turnoff, and on other turns along the way mean that anyone making their way there by private transport could not possibly get lost. I however, took public transport.

On the angkot down from Selabintana I met a wonderful woman my age named Yugi. She has a farm in Selabintana and a house in Bandung, where she was returning to, so I joined her for a while on the same bus. She showed me where to get off at Warungkambong village (there's a big sign saying "Gunung Padang Megalith Situs" peeps, you can't miss it) and also told me which bus to take from Cianjur for my next destination. People like Yugi who are so friendly and helpful are why I love Indonesia so much. Yugi has even invited me to stay with her in Bandung, which I'd love to at some stage, but for now I have had to pass.

From Warungkambong I took an ojek to Gunung Padang. This cost me 150,000Rp for the return trip. We also stopped in at Lampegan Station, because I'd heard it was an old abandoned colonial railway station with a tunnel you can walk through. No more peeps, it's a fully functional railway station, with trains connecting Cianjur with Sukabumi and Bogor three times a day. This train line has only been active again since the start of this year. There's still disused line between Cianjur and Bandung, I'm assuming the locals wouldn't mind if that got rehabilitated as well! So it's totally possible to take a train to Lampegan, from Cianjur, Bogor or Sukabumi and only then have a short (therefore much cheaper!!) ojek ride to the site.

The ojek ride is quite scenic, the final bit through tea plantations, but the road is the usual potholed nightmare. Sitting on the back of a bike is not very comfortable, though it's a great way to see the countryside.

There's a little infrastructure at the site itself - some pictures and diagrams about some of the research done there, concrete steps up to the site and viewing platforms. Entry fee is 5000Rp for foreigners and I choose to climb the less steep, but less dramatic concrete steps. There's two tiers of stones visible, and there's one theory that the entire hill is a man made pyramid. Since only the top two tiers are visible, and the rest of the hill is covered in vegetation, it's a little hard to really get the scope of how big this might actually be. I'll let the pictures speak.

For my descent I take the steep steps, made from the basalt rocks from the site, and return back along the long bumpy road on the motorbike to the highway. From there I take an angkot to Cianjur and then a bus to Garut. They drop me off at the Cipanas turnoff and I take an angkot up to the hot spa village. My room has hot water for the first time in Indonesia! What luxury!

Trouble is, I hate the place. That's next...

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Wandering in through the back door

After a week in Bogor I jumped on a small diesel train to Sukabumi. The train passed some of the most beautiful scenery: terraced rice paddies, cute little villages, roaring rivers, but I took no pictures, sorry...

In Sukabumi I found Angkot #10 by walking a little uphill from the station and was soon careening uphill towards Selabintana. A little Bahasa Indonesia goes a long way in explaining you don't want to stay at an expensive resort, but at a cheap place, so my driver drops me off at a hotel within my price range. I appear to be the only guest, but hey, it's clean, quiet and cheap.

Quiet is a little relative here. Nowhere is far from a mosque, and those folks keep unsociable hours. If  you want to pray at 4am, fine, but do we really need the karaoke?? The loudspeakers calling for prayers is actually really evocative, and some imams have beautiful voices. In Bogor each evening it was a beautiful sound, listening to all the mosques calling across the hills and valleys in the gathering dusk, but when they decide to give some kids the microphone to perform a screaming match, well it's a little hard to take when you'd rather catch a couple extra hours shuteye..

Hope you enjoyed those, I'm planning to bring you more soundscapes this trip. In fact, go back and check out the waterfall walk I did in Carita, as I've added some audio there too.

So, I unpack in my cheap hotel and head out in the hot midday sun to have a look around. I'm told if I turn left just after my hotel, that's the road to the waterfall. I also get told it's quite a few kilometres away, and it's too hot to go today, that 6 in the morning is a better time. Instead I wander through the kampungs, chatting to people, taking some pictures of some massive spiders, some kids and gardens and houses, then wander into a tea plantation. After a while, with the rocky track heading further and further uphill, I turn around and retrace my path. Some helpful but cheeky boys show me how to get back to the road and I wander back to my hotel, shower and head out for dinner. Nasi goreng, followed by banana and chocolate martabak. Nom nom!

I try to download my photos to discover that my camera card is totally corrupted now, and I've lost all of today's photos. This is the second time this has happened. The cheap card reader I brought along appears to be the culprit, so when it did it the first time I went out and bought another card reader, reformatted my card (yes I lost a day's worth of photos) and went on happy as until now. Luckily, the second reader came with a small USB cord, so my new strategy is to download straight from the camera. Both cheap and nasty card readers are in the bin, and one 32Gb CF card won't reformat. I've other cards, and I'm downloading photos off the camera every day, so it hasn't been an absolute disaster. I would be devastated if I'd lost more photos.

I'm up bright and early (it's pretty easy to wake up early with your helpful 4am alarm from the mosque!) Thursday to take an ojek (20,000Rp) to Pondok Halimun, which is the spot where the walk begins. Mist is rising over the nearby hills and the deep green tea plantations patchwork the foreground. It is indeed a long way and I am glad for the ride up on the motorbike. The guard post is still closed when I wander past at 6:30 and begin my climb.

The walk to the waterfall is along a path laid with rocks, and its signposted. This means you can't get lost, and there's quite a few interpretive signs as well. They may be in Indonesian, but they aren't too hard to follow.

The rocky track can be a little slippery as the ground is always wet. I'm so glad I brought along trekking poles on this trip, they make it so much easier and safer. My knees are giving me a bit of curry this trip, but I just try and ignore the pain and keep going, knowing they'll come good with more use. The poles help.

There's a lovely bubbly stream or two along the walk, so I pull out the tripod and filters for some dreamy moving water shots. I'm getting better at them, just need practice.

The undergrowth is very lush and I am in shade all the way. This is a proper rainforest, with a very healthy tree canopy. I see one monkey and hear a few others, and I don't see any leopards!

The waterfall can be first glimpsed from the track just before descending into the valley, and it's magnificent. It falls into a small pool from a very great height, making its own wind. It falls down a sheer rock face covered in vines and creepers and there's spray everywhere. I fail to get a shot I'm comfy with, being just too close to avoid water droplet halos and the like. More to be learned here.

It's about 9am when I get to the waterfall ( I stopped often for photography ops) and I am the only person there. No one else, just me and the magic. How good is that?

The walk back is easy enough - except for those slippery stones - and I find one more stream for me to play with. I also find a flower of what looks like a ginger species.

Back at the guard post the staff are all now at work so I wander in to have a look at the exhibits. They have a couple of camera traps for sighting the leopards - leopards sleep during the day and hunt at night - and run educational programs for school kids. They give me pamphlets and stickers and sell me my entrance ticket. They only charge me local price, I don't question it...

I also enquire about walking up to Gede, the active volcano around here. It seems I have to get the permit from the Cibodas main office on the other side of the mountain, so that kind of stymies me. It's totally possible to just walk on in though and not say you were going to Gede, or to go early before the post opened. But I think I'm going to give Gede a miss - there are plenty other volcanos to climb.

After I leave the post I stop at the warungs at Pondok Halimun for a grilled corn cob then wander off along the road back. Rather than take an ojek back down I'd rather walk. I'd also seen a suspiciously familiar rocky track between tea plants join the road and found this track only a couple of hundred metres back along the Pondok Halimun road. I remembered the big green mosque on the hill, yep, this was the track I'd been on yesterday. What a great shortcut, I reckon it would have cut at least 3km off the return trip.

Back down in the kampungs I manage to find a way across to the top of the road I'm staying on. This is where all the posh hotels are, and a few flash private residences too. I have my fresh coconut juice and wander back down the hill to where I belong...

I'm still nursing a head cold, and have an annoying cough. With everyone smoking around me it's a little unpleasant, and it means my mucosa will take longer than usual to heal. Even in my hotel room I can smell smoke from nearby cooking fires - it really is unavoidable. So I pack lots of tissues and the snot factory rolls on...

More photos here.

Next stop Atlantis!!

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Hitting the big durian

New York is the Big Apple, Jakarta is the Big Durian. Only the smell is even more unpleasant than the fruit!

Bogor is connected by a commuter train line with the capital. Rather than traipse my backpack through the streets finding accommodation, and then back out again it's easier to throw the iPhone and Olloclip in my pocket and jump on the train for the day. Especially when the trip costs $1 return!

I wasn't quite sure what to expect as far as crime and pickpocketing was concerned (Jakarta gets some pretty bad press from the travel and expat communities) so decided not to take the big camera and just use the iPhone for the day. It made me less of a target. As it turns out, I shouldn't have been concerned, and the battery ran out on the iPhone so it's not a viable option anyway.

The train takes just less than 2 hours from Bogor to Jakarta Kota. Make sure you get on the right train in Bogor as trains also go to Tanah Abang and Jatinegara. I realised I was on the wrong one, but it's easy to just swap trains at Manggurai or any of the other stops before the train branches off. There are announcements at the train station, and on the train, or you can just ask a fellow passenger.

Jakartakota station was built by the Dutch and is an impressive building. It's in the north of the city near the old original town of Batavia, which is what the Dutch VOC called the city after they'd conquered the local prince and his sultan allies up the road in Banten. They constructed huge warehouses for their commodity trading - initially spices but they diversified - developed the port, built a walled city, and turned the Ciliwang River delta into a set of canals. Quite a lot like Amsterdam.

Along the way the ship carrying the vast gate portal (as ballast) for the fort got shipwrecked and sunk on a reef in the Houtman Abrolhos Islands off Geraldton. It's now in the maritime museum there. It's my link with this part of Jakarta's history. Houtman, by the way, was a VOC man and the first governor of Batavia.

My first stop was Fatahillah Square, which houses a number of museums, some great old buildings, lots of street stalls and performance artists who even provide props so you can take your photo with them. I'm there too early for this spectacle, only a solo artist dressed up as a Dutch lady in crinoline is present when I wander through, have my breakfast and continue north to Sunda Kelapa port.

This port (entrance fee 2000Rp) is the original port for Jakarta, but is too small and shallow for large commercial shipping, which was moved to Tanjunk Priok to the east back in the late 1800s. It still operates, however, as a domestic shipping port for the wooden pinisi that ply the Indonesian archipelago. It's also a tourist attraction, with quite a few other, mostly domestic, tourists yielding some impressive cameras. I shouldn't have worried about bringing mine, but instead, I made do with the iPhone, and am happy with my shots.

On the other side of the river is the old watchtower and the Bahari Museum (entrance for both 5000Rp), which is housed in old Dutch warehouses. It's pretty cool, and has quite a lot of good information about the ports and history, as well as some really interesting stuff about traditional boat building throughout the archipelago. It's a bit of a rabbit warren, you really need to explore because it's a bit schizophrenic. The information boards that chronicle Jakarta's maritime and port history are in both Indonesian and English (a bit of a rarity) but are scattered around one room in no chronological order even though they actually tell an historical account. There are some huge warehouse floors completely empty, others have replica boats in them. There's also a fun life-size diorama display on the history of maritime sailing throughout the world, including the Chinese, the Arabs and the European explorers. Dampier, Cook and Bligh even make an appearance.

After the Bahari Museum I head south again, following one of the canals, which is a filthy smelly thing lined with old houses and warehouses which are falling down. It would be good to see this area restored and turned into a tourist district, but instead it just decays beyond redemption. You can certainly understand why the Europeans later moved out of the district to higher ground, it feels unhealthy...

One of the few Dutch buildings that has been restored is Toko Merah, or the red shop. It's now a bank office. There's also an old drawbridge over the filthy canal, and there's quite a bit of restoration work going on in the Square itself.

Back in Fatahillah Square it's now teeming with life. Lots of performance artists, some acrobats, caricaturists and street sellers. Quite the Saturday afternoon in the city. I head over to the history museum, housed in the former residence of the Dutch governor back in the day. It's also undergoing renovation, and most of the exhibitions are in storage, which is a bit of a pity, but for an entrance fee of 5000Rp (or 50c) you can hardly get upset. Plus I use the (free) toilet while I'm there. They have quite a few pictures of the renovation work they've done, and I'm pretty happy they're doing it, because the building was getting very run down and it's good to see some heritage being valued.

Next after the history museum is the puppet museum. Wayang, or puppet theatre, is a big part of Javan culture, and there are variations in the puppets and stories enacted throughout the island. There's a little bit of puppetry in Sumatra, but the rest of the archipelago use mainly masks and costumes in their storytelling. They've also a collection of puppets from other countries - they have French puppets donated by Francois Mitterand's wife, and puppets from Vietnam, India and China, and even a couple of Punch and Judys.

By the time I have finished in the puppet museum (5000Rp entrance fee) there is a massive thunder and lightning storm unleashing itself on Jakarta. The square is now completely empty of people, and all the canopies and umbrellas are sheltering crowds hiding from the rain. I wait a while then make a dash for the Batavia Cafe, a very flash pub on one corner of the Square. I'm looking forward to enjoying an ice cold beer, but a perusal of the price tags sees me heading out into the rain again to find a cafe offering beer at a more reasonable price. If I'd been with friends it may have been worth the cost for the atmosphere - there's a live band playing some jazzy/cabaret numbers and it feels very colonial - but 60,000Rp before taxes for a beer is just a ripoff! And don't get me started on what they were charging for food. More than back home!!

Instead I enjoy a quiet Heineken at a cafe next to the museum, where a beer only cost 25000Rp after taxes. It comes cold, with a chilled glass to pour it into. Well worth waiting 2 weeks for it.

Alcohol isn't so easily available in Moslem dominated Java. It does get sold in some supermarkets but isn't freely available around the street stalls and warungs where I usually eat. There is a bar not far from where I'm staying but it's often full of tour guides, I've been told, which is why I have been avoiding it. So far I've had one guide turn up at the guesthouse being friendly and helpful, but my bullshit radar is pretty well tuned to working out who is being helpful for the money, and who is being genuinely friendly. Now that I speak passable Indonesian (it's still pretty crap but enough to have halting conversations with people and get around without English) I'm less tolerant of those sprucing overpriced tours that I could do myself. So I sacrifice having a cold beer because I really don't want to deal with the bullshit.

After my refreshing beer I head back out into the drizzle and walk back to Jakartakota station and take the commuter train back to Bogor. My iPhone battery has not lasted the day, even with me putting it on flight mode so it's not using battery life finding phone signals. Without a spare battery it's not an option to travel with just the phone as my camera, but it's not a bad alternative for short trips. The Olloclip gives me a little more versatility, especially for wide angle shots.

Back in Bogor I receive a call from Agus, whom I met in Cilegon. We go see a movie - Captain America - and for 2 hours I could be anywhere. OK, the Indonesian subtitles give it away, but it's such an ubiquitous experience to be in a large movie theatre watching a Hollywood blockbuster that it's a little disorientating to discover where I am when the lights go up at the end.

Agus gives me a lift home, but we get a little quagmired trying to get there, as the market we pass has transformed into a huge roadside vegetable market twice the size it is during the day. I am gobsmacked, this market goes 24 hours!

I may just have to spend more time here taking photos...

The rest of the Jakartakota photos are here