Indon I : The Journey

It’s been 10 months of emotional turbulence; but everything was paid off when I finally stepped my foot at the Penang International Airport on the night of 12th January 2010.

Together with me were Sat, Ailing, Emily, Elise and Lasker.

Our flight for KUL scheduled to fly off at 10.45pm was delayed an hour. But we weren’t bothered with the delay, for we have the whole night to kill. Everyone was pretty excited, tho some of us were dead tired due to rushing to airport from work. We sat at the tables of closed cafe, chatting about the baby being stuffed into the toilet bowl and Facebooking while waiting for the announcement for embarkation to be made.

At 11.50pm, we were allowed to board and most of them directly dozed off once the plane took off. Despite being so tired, I can’t catch a wink! So did Sat. Both of us were just chatting, giggling and taking pictures (of those who slept). Kaka!

Out of the blue, I felt hungry!

The plane reached LCCT at 12 something. We went around the terminal, finding place to sit and nap, but all seats were occupied! Mardeh betui. So, we cured our hunger by having supper at Old Town LCCT first – hoping there would be seats available after that.

Aaron came not long after that, followed by William. Together we spent almost 2 hours, eating, talking, Facebooking, taking pictures, staring at people. ==” I had the urge of taking my DSLR out to play, but then I didn’t.

We would love to sit there longer, but there’s a time quota. Left Old Town and wandered around the terminal looking for seats again! We scouted high and low, still all seats were either occupied by human or bags. In the end, we sat on the floor at the corner like homeless people. Haha!

Looking at Aaron and William playing around with their DSLRs, making feel like taking out mine too for the purpose of blogging. However, when I switched on my DSLR, it wouldn’t start!

And I realised that there’s NO BATTERY in the battery slot!


Panicked, I looked for the battery in my backpacks. I searched every corner of the bag, still none! Sadly, I had to accept the fact that I didn’t bring along the battery. 

Immediately Sat asked me to call up Daniel as his previous D40 battery can be used on mine! Hopeful, I called Daniel up just to know that he has already left home for airport.

sulked, while Sat quickly checked out photography shop in Yogyakarta through his iPhone. He found one. But he told me should the price be very expensive and I not willing pay for me, then the next best thing I can do is to message Jess to buy the battery and bring it to Bali.

Hearing that I told him, “no matter how expensive it is, I must and will get it!

In my mind, pictures are more important than money. I must be insane for thinking like that but I knew that I won’t be going back there again so I need to take enough pictures for memories.

I prayed hard, hoping that particular shop does sell cheap battery. I regretted not taking out my DSLR when I was in airport (I had the hunch of taking the camera out to shoot but I didn’t) and at the Old Town LCCT. If I know about that earlier, I would have been saved by Daniel’s battery.

Sigh. No point crying over spilled soup. So, I pushed that matter aside and tried feeling excited about the upcoming trip!

The worrying caused me feeling hungry again. I quickly pulled Sat to accompany me for early breakfast at MCD. Yums!

3 hours prior to our flight, we checked in at the check-in kiosk. It was fun and easy to play with. Just key in the booking number, tick the names showed, swipe the passport and print!

Daniel and David came soon, and the Yogyakarta gang was completed. We checked both of them in using the same method but David’s was rejected. We tried so many times, but still it wouldn’t work.

It was only dawn to us that the machine rejected him because of his name! One minor different of a ‘hyphen’ and he has to check-in using the old way. We dumped our bags at the luggage drop centre while he joined the long queue at the counter.

Before that, we went and ‘turkeyfied’ our backpacks. We heard plenty news about bags being opened up and scavenged by God-knows-who in Indonesia. Not taking any risks, few of us spent RM9 for wrapping service.

My turkey weighted 8.7kg!

With another 2 hours to go, the gang decided to have breakfast at MCD’s. I ate earlier so I wasn’t feeling hungry. Nevertheless, I took this opportunity to have a quick nap. Hoho!

Then we made our way towards the International terminal! Adrenaline rushed in, and I became so hyper there! We checked out the duty free stores, and soon it was time to board. Ahhh! I can still remember the excitement tho it has been exactly 2 months ago!

We were actually being rushed to board the flight. Soon after we seated on the plane, the plane took off and I found myself to be in Dreamland.

I can’t recall how long I slept nor how many times had I fallen asleep as I kept waking up and dozing off.

But I knew I was fully awake when I saw the land of Indonesia. The lush greenery, the fascinating shape of the hills and mountains, the awkwardness colour of the forest – really got me staring at them for long. I tried waking Sat up, but he didn’t even open his eyes! He was just “mm.. mm” while nodding his head. Abit frustrated with his response, I let him sleep – for it’s his loss for not able to witness the wonderful scenery. Bleks!

That moment, I wished my DSLR could miraculously work to capture this exquisite landscape.

The journey from Kuala Lumpur to Yogyakarta takes 2 hours and 40 minutes. About 30 minutes after I woke up, the announcement of landing was made. I’m guessing that I slept about two and an half hour?

We landed smoothly on the humble land of Yogyakarta. The airport is smaller than Penang’s, there are only 2 Immigration counters and one luggage conveyer belt; BUT there is FREE WIFI! I never expect free WIFI there because airports like Penang and Tokyo don’t even provide free WIFI.

I guess I have underestimated this city.

We took our turkeys from the conveyer belt, unwrapped them, passed the ‘Declaration form’ to the Custom polices and walked out. Right in front of the Arriving hall, there was this lady behind a tall desk. We did research beforehand that there will be plenty of transportation available at the airport. But since this lady was so nice and friendly and the price quoted was reasonable (we even checked on the price, hoho!), we decided to get her company’s service.

Halfway dealing at the desk, we were asked to leave the place as the officers wanted to close the Arriving hall for that hour or maybe day. So we followed the lady to the company’s booth at the side.

On the way there, I was dumbstruck with the amount of tour/transportation booths on the left. But I knew the price that the lady offered was lower than the one I found on the Internet, so I was fine with the price as it was within the budget I allocated the transportation in Yogyakarta.

At the booth were another 2 very friendly ladies in Indonesian kebaya, rich in smile and manners, addressed Sat as Bapa (which means Mister/Sir) and advised him on the best routes we can take in order to see the main tourist attractions in such a short visit.

Transportation of Kia Pregio with a driver for a day service inclusive of petrol costs us 700.000 Rupiah to wherever we want . Since there were 10 of us, so it’s 70.000 Rupiah (RM25.50) per person.

After collecting all the money, (again Emily’s the appointed treasurer!), we wandered around the airport for we were told that the van would be there in half an hour time. I went to their ‘karma kecil’ which is their toilet and is very fascinated with it! The toilet bowl is so small! And there’s no flush. Just clear your ‘businesses by pouring water onto the bowl. One gush and it’s gone!

That was the time also I was introduced to their local drink, a markisah flavoured tea. We went to an old looking grocery store at the corner to buy mineral water. Feeling hot, Sat decided to grab something cold from the fridge. He saw this drink, asking me if I want to try that. As I love trying things, I agreed and we paid 7.000 Rupiah (RM2.55) for the 1.5l mineral water and the packet drink.

Then van came and we walked towards the van together with the Indonesian lady. She spoke to the driver, introduced him to us, and then bid us goodbye.

What a charming lady. I read about the people in Yogyakarta on them being hospitable and friendly, and seems like that is true.

From there, the exploration of Yogyakarta began…