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Saturday, October 04, 2008

Jouney to Makassar I

The flight from Surabaya-Makassar took an hour and 15 minutes to finish. I start to see the red land, (land or sand? just like in Batam) when we’re approaching the Makassar airport or most of us call it Hasanuddin Airport - reflecting the name of our heroes a Gowa King which is near Makassar-
The new Hasanuddin airport which already operated since August 4th, was really big compared to other island outside Java. I was there on 6th August and although it has less food counter (KFC’s only sell crispy chicken no original recipe one and no french fries?), for sure it has many seating available, many restroom and musholla in a clean and fine condition. The venue inside departure airport is connected to arrival airport, so people who get a connecting flight will easily find the transit counter and do many things before they leave. I guess in the next 3-4 months it will be a nice place to wait for a flight :).

Back to my story about the tour to Tana Toraja (simply Tator) and Makassar. Since we have a very limited time arranged by the committee (I went to MKS to accompany my mom for her
ophthalmologists congress), the tour designed for only 3 days start form MKS-Tator-MKS. And as an ordinary group tour as always we have to wait the other participants. After finishing 1 KFC’s crispy chicken, confirmed our flight to Surabaya, play games on my laptop for about half an hour, and start to think why do we take the earliest flight if we have to wait other people, maybe I could took the second flight to Makassar, and other useless thought, it’s already 11 a.m when Mr. Ulla - the tour guide- call us all to get into the bus correctly it’s a mini bus with 20 seats.
There are 2 groups consisting 19 people who arrived earlier and 8 people
who late (not late actually, but their planes are delayed for a technical reasons, hah). Well, in the middle of the tour, we (me, mom, and my sister) think that the group will be move faster if they just make the number of the people inside the two groups balance. Don’t you think it’s better to make it 11 & 12 people, as it will make the groups move faster on each places of interest? But maybe Mr. Ulla do this to punish the other groups who are late. Hahahaha...., another useless thought.

The 1st destination is Toraja, and Mr Ulla start to guide us in the bus. First thing he told us is that journey to Tator is about 9 hours. Whatt?? The groups silenced, and start to calculate how many pain they could afford, as this journey will absolutely make us gets pain in our back and (sorry) ass.

Well, I guess there wouldn’t be so much rejection if we drive overnight, because people always sleeps at night, and when they open their eyes, they already arrive. Nice. But no more objection, this tour must be continued, and we started to enjoy the Celebes view (we haven’t seen makassar, since the airport is at the end of makassar) about 25 kilos from it actually.

The view is very green, with tons of rice fields side by side, so many I told you. The view is combined between rice fields-houses (about 10-20 houses)-rice fields-houses, with the background of mountain limestone. Houses in makassar is already in a modern one, but houses in other district, especially the further it from makassar mostly designed as traditional one.

Anyway, Celebes has many of mountain limestone, and as this is the greatest source of making cements there are two huge cement factory near makassar, Tonasa and Bosowa. Sadly, their activities is also endangered the mountain limestone, I mean the existence of the inhabitants inside it. When I told you about mountain limestone, it is not like white chalky all over on it, well actually I thought that mountain limestone is like that, since I ever seen one mountain limestone in Java, and it’s only rocky mountain with no single green plant or a living on it. Just rocky limetstone and many dump trucks. But these mountain limestone in celebes is huge and with lengthening greens on top of it and very rich soil I guess. Beautiful. Maybe the rocky limestone on Java has the same greens just like it 10-20 years before now.

An hour from the airport, on pangkep district, we decide to stop after we saw a lot of small kiosk on the street who sells dange, a traditional food from pangkep. It made from black sticky rice with coconut, it’s not my favourite, but surprisingly my mother loves it. These cookies sold in a paper box, consist of 7 pieces and only cost you Rp. 5.000,- But you can ask less than 7 if you think you can’t finished it. It taste sweet but not to sweet, and deliciously oily.

We’re continuing our journey again, and most of the time I fell asleep. :D

I also acknowledge that there’s still gas scarcity outside makassar. Mr Ulla told me that on 2-3 weeks before, gas scarcity is worsened outside makassar. The gas station sometimes limit the amount of the gas you can buy, and sometimes there’s no gas at all. (:( Sad...why is this happening? Is this because of distribution, lack of gas supply, or people who play cheat and start to collect all the gas for themselves?)

3 hours from Makassar we arrived on Pare-Pare and stop by to get the lunch at 2.30 pm. In this city mr. Habibie was born, the first president after Soeharto fallen. The city is small, but clean, with lots of huge and new government building with a large yard. Pare-Pare geographically is nearby with the sea, and also placed in a hill, this cause to winding and twisting streets. But the good thing is you can see the sea from your left side, beautiful. The tour put us in a nice place to eat, as we can see the sea view from the top of the hill. Unfortunately, the food is under average. But it’s okay, since we got the view :). The name if this restaurant is Bukit Kenari.

As we continue our journey to Tator, the road ahead is getting more and more twisted. I think i understand now why would they put us on a mini bus, since the road is quite small. But still i quite stunned with the silent and beautiful view on my surrounding. After two hours driving from Pare-Pare, the bus stop at the top of a mountain, with a view of mountain hill directly in front of us. Local people called it Erotic Mountain, but still till I’m going home i don’t understood why would they’ve called it like that, for me is just simply a mountain with no erotic side of it :D, just breeze that i felt :D.

We stop by to fill ourselves with water and hot coffee and also the right place to get the restroom. Although there are nothing specials about the food, you can find many traditional foods for gift, but still you can buy it either at Tator or Makassar.

We’ve reach the dawn and I start wondering where we have been, what time do we’ll get there, and also start to think my bed. Sigh, but the bus keep going and for an hour and finally we’ve reach Tator administration city. Huurayy...I yelled to myself as I look at Sahid Hotel that we had crossed by, I thought it would be less than 10 minutes till we arrived to Missiliana Hotel, our place to sleep for 2 nights. 5 minutes, 10 minutes, 15 minutes...??

Mr. Ulla identify the group’s concerned, try to explain that our hotel is near with Rantepao, the second city on Toraja area, appx an 45 minutes drive. Well then, as I can’t see anything outside as it is already night, I just sit and wait and pray for the bus to go faster.

After a tiring journey with the cost of 2 water bottles, 1 cup of mil tea, 1 pack of Silver Queen, and 1 piece of Dange, 1 tea bottle, 1 pack of wafer, finally I arrived on Missiliana Hotel. The parking lot is enough to hold 10 minibus and 5 cars, and the lobby has a warm ambience although the weather is cold. The welcome drink is nice, dutch eggplant juice. My family decided to see our room and get a shower first before we get the dinner. The place was quite big and dark, the room separated with the lobby by a park with Torajan traditional houses and traditional rice barn.

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Aku seperti penyair miskin tak berarti
Menyuruk di sudut sudut tembok dingin kamarku
Kepalaku kosong hampa tak bertuan, jiwanya hilang entah kemana
Mataku mengerjap kerjap mencari mata air inspirasi
Kenapa? Kenapa kata kata tak lagi datang mengaliri darahku
Kemana semua ide brilian yang kemarin berloncatan tanpa henti?
Lidahku kelu, sekelu hatiku yang semakin dingin dan tak berisi
Aku mendesah gerah dan mengeluh pada ujung ujung meja yang acuh tak bergerak, diam dan menatap mataku menusuk dan menghina
Kamu sudah tak berarti katanya
Tuhan, Tuhan...Engkau dimana, lirih sepi hatiku terbata mengucap
Tuhan Tuhan, tolonglah aku, kembalilah padaku
Tuhan tetap diam dan tak bergeming
Sementara hatiku semakin mengering.....

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