Sunday, July 26, 2009

17000 Islands - 2 down, 16998 to go

(Click on the pics to enlarge)

The People
(Top-L to R: Village Idiot, Village Sentinel, Rice Farmers,Village Chief)

The Religion
(Last day of the Tribal Funeral Ceremony - Water Buffalo Slaughter)

The homes away from home
(From L to R - My Tongkonan with the tribes, Hotel room view in Rantepao, Room view from the Batutumonga Bio-Reserve)

The Food
(From L to R - Standard fare with the villagers, Papiong - Chicken cooked in bamboo, Roast Pig - WHOLE!)

The transport
(From L to R - State of my shoes after a 36-hour non-stop hike 3000m above sea level, The poor man's 4 wheel drive alternate in Indonesia, Flying coffins - the bentor/pechak)

The universal language of kids (east or west)
(From L to R - Farmer kids, my colleague Gabi's daughter Yella)

The partners in crime, rhyme and grime
(From Top L - R: Sandi, Yousuf (aka Bob Marley Jr. - is he the same as your London guy Soniya?), Yuan and Daud, my driver)

The reason I hate airline travel
(My justification for being tired, non-reachable and hating airlines)

5 things I will not forget easily

Water buffalo blood splattered across my face
Drinking beer with rickshaw pullers
Singing 'Kuch Kuch Hota Hai' with the locals (FYI - I was tipsy, they were nice)
Participating in a catholic mass with locals singing hymns karaoke-style
Meeting a 28 year old Canadian traveler who has spent the last 10 years just traveling and working all over the world - 34 countries to be precise; she is single; it's a pity she and women like her don't live in Mumbai :)
Nightlife in Jakarta. Mumbai, learn!
Meeting local Indonesians with names like Van Hilmer, Oliver Van de Bleeker, Denise Barhydt (I checked their IDs in disbelief)
Making fire 3000m above sea level
Being thrown into a rice field at the end of this coversation with a local colleague-
"Beatrice: What do you hate about Indonesia the most?
Me: LANGUAGE! NOBODY speaks English and I don't speak a word of Bahasa.
Beatrice: Its not our fault that we were not colonized by the British like you BPO Indians.
Me: Indonesia was colonized by the Dutch. So, how good is your dutch madam?
Realizing that a list of just 5 things I won't forget easily can't exist
With so many Islands left, the Indonesian currency so badly screwed up (a budget traveler's heaven) and such lovely people, deciding to go back once every year. Next trip - the volcano laced island of Flores in December 09 :)

(P.S. The pics are far, far, far better than they seem. Blame the pixelation on the fact that I'm a very bad photo-editor-cutter-paster-softwarer. Mail me if there's any particular one you would like to see. I'd be more than happy to share)


Poshgit said...

WHOA!! you're one lucky whole roast pig i say :)what do you do exactly, that makes yours seem like the best job in the world??! :)

great pics btw, pixelation regardless...the village folk collage especially :) more tales from the down-east awaited!!

kamna said...

Dude... u are my GOD! :-) ... I kno the description of ur travels were too good to believe but I'm just shocked... and plesantly shocked... the shots are fantastic... I'm veggie but I loved the slaughter shots... amazing timing... :-)

Dude.. u say this a lot to a lot of people... but u kno "ure something else"... u are dude.. 36 hour trek... living with tribes... I'm just speechless Taran :-)

kamna said...

oh.. wait... I had to respond to Poshgit's comment... Poshgit, if u do get to understand what he does please tell me... cos I don't.. it beats me how someone his age, without an MBA is doing strategy and planning and watevr it is he does...

errormsg! said...

see, see what a life you have?!! see?

i can imagine grandpa notgogol regaling generations with his fables :)

notgogol said...

@posh: this trip has nothing to do with my job re.. I've always wanted to go to Indonesia, so since I was around, I decided to go there. No tales and all. I'm in all probability gonna stop blogging (even the little that I do). No more enthu in life.

@kamna: :) beats me too actually. Will show u the tribal videos whenever ure back in India.

@errormsg!: the grass is always greener on the other side na re :) U luv'd rishikesh na; u'll love indonesia as well. u must go there.

Poshgit said...

whaaaat?? stop blogging?? no more enthu?? what is thees i say!! who's gonna compete with me for blog-slob title then?? :)

but seriously, why this sadness and sorrow? esp after what seems like a brilliant trip?

and i'd still like to know what your job is. general knowledge :)

notgogol said...

@posh: generally man. No enthu to do anything actually. I don't know really. Perhaps this is my introspective self, perhaps I'm PMSing. I don't know :| Ok, I stop. I won't crib on my own blog

Usual run of the mill corporate slave man. In a nutshell, I work for an MNC in a team thats developing strategy, setting up plants and starting them up. It's not as exciting as being a journalist :)

vira said...

y u never take a holiday like a normal person, I don't know. have u heard of Bali? beach pe baith, tequila pi. nahin. aadivasiyon ke saath unki jhopdi main rehna hai. aur tune nilofer ke dimaag main bhi yeh keeda daal diya hai. ab usko december main indonesia jaana hai. khud toh paagal hai. ab sabko paagal bana raha hai.

ps. Ossome pics. I mean seriously lovely. U never cease to amaze me dost :)

Poshgit said...

ah PMSing. we understand :)

and perhaps a post on 'how sub-editing isn't exactly exciting journalism' is necessary to convince thee otherwise :)

Pooja said...

nice blog! dont even know if u are a man or wooman! haha
anyways got ur blog address from a comment on mine!

payal.k said...

Yo! Wotsup?? Drinking beers with the rickshaw pullers sounds familiar ;)I like the 'partners in crime' pic the best...there is amazing character in all the four pictures..looks interestin!
and i wouldnt mind the male version of the single traveller 28 year old chic!!!! Flores...sounds or holday or both???

notgogol said...

@vira: U must come too. Give ur boutique a break. It needs it. Actually, giv ur family a break. they need it too :P

@poshgit: periods over today! :)

@pooja: I'm man (plus periodic cramps, menstrual or otherwise)! Yes, yes. I remember ur blog. Big bambaiyya house one :) Object of me envy, lady!

@payal: u drink beer with rickshaw-pullers too?
and oh.. all the four partners ARE amazing characters.
U find me one and I'll find u one. Deal? :P
Flores - work? Jwalmukhi ki kokh main kya toh kaam hoga madam?

errormsg! said...

what? what? why has new post disappeared? eh?

:| said...

You had some killer fun! And no, it's not the same Bob Marley guy. They're probably distant cousins or something. :P

notgogol said...

@abagchiinmysoup: nowhere baba. Post be here only. where be u looking?

@soniya: But I never got to meet the queen of englund and all :|

anoushka said...

Lucky bum u r! I dont envy u for ur traveling sprees or ur travel experiences. But I do envy for the fact that u know u want to do - travel and u do it.

Sahi main bolti hun tujhko, tu manega nahin, but u have a very nice way of looking at life, people and existence. Do leave Bombay soon. A few souls miss u.

notgogol said...

@anu: Thats the nicest thing someone has said to me in a long time. :)
Why you speaking in hindi? You're freaking me out man :)

oRange* said...

indonesia's a beautiful place! sweet people :)

saya tau bahasa ;)

Instinctivecuriosity said...

An update is long overdue!

notgogol said...

@orange*: echoing ur "about me" - :O! Anda tau bahasa? nice :)

Anonymous said...

Haha quirky you are! I seen a similar Yak slaughter in Sikkim a few months back.. Mass massacre i call it. Scarred me for life. :O lol

But good shit. What do you work as? Makes me jealous to see ppl travel so much AND get paid to do so. hmph.

Anonymous said...

P.S - Timothy Leary will turn in his grave if you don't make it - Turn On, Tune In, Drop Out already. :P
Ya ya, I've been called grammar-nazi before. :P

And, it's easier to just ignore me too. It's your blog after all. :)

notgogol said...

@purpleperson: You follow up 'scarred for life' with 'lol' and have the audacity to call ME quirky! :P

P.S. Wouldn't want to anger Mr. Leary, would we now? Also, are you perchance the person whose face was broken?

Anonymous said...

Yup. I'm the one with the broken face, plastered together now. :D