Finally getting around to the last two days of our Jogja trip. This is now our last day before
returning to Batam. Dewi’s stomach troubles made her stay at the hotel, as she couldn’t stand the idea of another long and bumpy ride. Kim and Lena wanted to see Mt. Merapi but it was another overcast day. Undeterred, we rode to the base of the mountain, still unable to see a thing. We continued upward, however, stopping at a base camp area where jeep tours were offered.
I had had enough of riding on bumpy roads so opted out of the jeep ride but Kim and Lena were gung ho for the adventure. I waited, walked around, almost did some shopping, had coffee with some locals and did a bit of blog writing. The jeep tour took about an hour and a half.
Next, it was time for one of the highlights of the trip – a visit to Ihksan’s village, and lunch.
Once in his village, we were brought to a ramshackle building with a glass enclosure out front containing two naked lamb legs, some of the meat already carved away. We were here for lamb sate. The owner and staff, of course, knew Ihksan. The sate was cooked over an open fire and the sticks removed before serving with rice and vegetables, and iced Jasmine tea. While we were waiting, Ihksan left and brought back his 1 1/2-year-old son.
We then went to Ihksan’s house and met his wife, Linda, and father-in-law. It was only a
matter of minutes before all the neighborhood kids arrived to see the foreigners. I like to call this the “seagull effect.” If you’ve ever been to a beach with food in hand, you know what happens – one seagull turns into a flock very quickly. How they know there is food from so far away is a mystery to me, just like how did the neighborhood kids know so quickly we were there. Anyway, we had great fun and walked around the neighborhood a little, smiling faces greeting us everywhere.
Our next stop was at the suspension bridge I visited on my last trip, which crosses the river that runs alongside Ihksan’s house. The owner of the food stall at the end of the bridge remembered me. Lena turned out not to be too fond of the bridge and its unstable nature, and when a motorcycle started crossing from the opposite side, she high-tailed it quickly back to land. Very funny.
It was getting late in the day and we were bushed, so it was back to the hotel. By now, Dewi was feeling better and was glad to have some company. But the girls were not done and headed off later to Malioboro Street for more shopping. For dinner, I opted for room service, as no one had the energy to go out for dinner.
The next morning, Ihksan was early to take us to the airport. After another Indonesian buffet breakfast, we loaded up all the bags and boxes into the van and headed to the airport. Ihksan had done a great job as our guide and he and Kim had worked up the beginning of a buyer and agent relationship.
I highly recommend Ihksan for anyone wanting a Jogja tour of the sights or for shopping, or both. He has a nice, clean van and seems to know where to find bargains for just about anything you might want. And his choices for meals were excellent. You can reach him at +62 8180400 7008.
I don’t remember much of the return flight as I faded out. A great trip!