Monday, February 28, 2011

Hand made scarf, connecting scarf, ulos mangiring

CSC_8446From Ratha nephew Netty I received a wonderful present. Hand made, over one 100 years old, special scarf - ulos mangiring, connection scarf. This type of the scarf is usually offered in order to connect to family. Now I am connected to Batak family for ever.

Hike to triple island.

View from the top of Samosir island.
Have you ever heard about triple island? Triple island is an island on the lake, and this lake is situated on the island which is located on the Lake on the Island.

Sounds in Indonesia - quiz.

CSC_8273Every day for one hour Ratna is teaching in 3-5 years old children in a local school. I joined her two times. I wanted to take few photos for her blog as well I wanted to contribute a bit to the lessons.

Recipe for the most Delicious fish

CSC_82891. Wake up 6 o'clock in the morning at the Lake Toba bank.
2. Enjoy the beautiful sun rise for few minutes.
3. Jump in the canoe.
4. Start pulling fishing net trying not to scramble it and clean it from the water plants.

The story about the fisherwomen.

CSC_8510Every morning after sunrise, fisherwomen prepares her canoe.
She pushes it out the waters of Lake Toba and paddle in the direction of rising sun... Or maybe rather in the direction of her fishing nets. Is there something in the net today? For sure plenty of water, but yea there is also a fish. Sunny fish in the net. The women is happy. The name of this women is Ratna.

My first ever Lobster

CSC_7181What is the most exclusive food? I do not know. But one of the most exclusive that I know is lobster. I have never tried one, but I was sure that I would taste one day. I thought that one day when I will have a job I would go to exclusive restaurant to check it out. Or if I ever go to exclusive, medical related conference, maybe I would be able to enjoy this taste.

Plant a tree

CSC_7230Earth's lungs are located around the equator, mostly in the underdeveloped countries. Sometimes the main income for those people are the natural goods that they can find around them. One of the goods is wood, timber which they use as a building material for they houses, canoes, or are selling. From the global perspective it is rally bad that the jungle is cut down, but for some local people it is the only way to feed their children, afford their education or pay for a visit in hospital. Are the developed countries supports enough the uncut jungles in underdeveloped countries?

Students from Medan

CSC_7341I arrived to Silimalumbu on Saturday morning and found out that the EcoFarm is FULL. Thirty Indonesian university students came to this farm to plant the trees and collect plastic waste for two days. The first day we planted 350 trees in a jungle and the second we collected plastic waste from the Lake Toba. I was also main photographer of this event.

Friday, February 18, 2011

EcoFarm on Lake Toba island.

EcoFarm, view from the lake.
In Sabang (Pulau Weh) I met Beat, Swiss biker. We snorkeled few times together and we shared the same bungalow. He told me about his wonderful experience of staying for one week on the EcoFarm, in Silimalumbu on Samosir Island. I decided to go there for few days, and finally I stayed there longer than I anticipated be...

Medan Chinese new year

I came back to Medan from Aceh in order to experience Chinese new year. I search for it the whole day, unfortunately the celebration in Medan there are not too spectacular. Basically there is almost no celebration. Chinese people go to temples and they told me that I should go to shopping mall to experience some Chinese new year decorations...

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Trying to catch the wave

CSC_6540One of my aim in Indonesia was to try surfing. I did not wanted to go to a very touristic place like Bali, I decided to try it in Aceh. I went to Lhoknga beach. This place was completely wide up by tsunami. Before 26 December 2004 there were 7000 people in the village. The next day only 600 were alive. In the neighboring village, which was situated on the sea cost in front of the mountain from 10000 inhabitants - no one survived the tsunami.
Now those places thanks to the international help are completely rebuild. The are rows of new and the same houses. Local people are smiling and greeting every single foreigner that they meet. Not to many surfers are coming here nowadays, but every single is warmly welcome by the local people.

Smoking in Indonesia

I think every man in Indonesia is a chain smoker. If look around, every guy smoke cigarettes. Guys here are like a an Indonesian volcanoes, always surrounded by smoke. Alcohol is not allowed in the Muslim part of Indonesia, so instead they are hooked to the cigarettes.

Night at the harbor

At the north tip of Sumatra there is an island Sabang (Pulau Weh) which is considered as snorkeling and diving paradise. I went there to experience once again underwater life snorkeling. I was not really lucky with the weather it was raining most of the time but the underwater life is indeed amazing up there. Colourful fishes which appear the time that one puts the head underwater.

Power of tsunami

Fisherman boat on the house moved by tsunami.
On 26 December 2004 tsunami that was triggered by earthquake hit the cost of Aceh, completely devastating the coastal line infrastructure. In Banda Aceh, capital city 150.000 were killed. In the last years the province was rebuild with the international help. Before the tsunami the whole province was in a kind of war state willing to gain independence from Indonesia. After the tsunami local politicians accepted to be a part of Indonesia and accepted international peace now there is peace in this province.

What is your size, Mister?

CSC_8558This question I was asked by a girl in Berastagi, North Sumatra, Indonesia. And she did not wanted to know, how tall I am.
I would have maybe expected such a direction question in South America, but in Indonesia, in the biggest Muslim country in the world, this was a surprise.

Looking inside our planet 2 - climbing Gunung Sinabung volcano.

Gunung Sinabung.
Climbing Gunung Sinabung is a bit challenging. The volcano is higher. The trek starts from the lake Kawar. Initially I planed to do it on my own but luckily in the evening before I met Ohad and we decided to climb together the next day.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Looking inside our planet 1 - climbing Gunung Sibayak volcano.

Sulphur in the crater.
One of the aims in Indonesia was to climb a volcano. I went to Berastagi from where one can climb two volcanoes: Gunung Sibayak and Gunung Sinabung. The first day I climbed Gunung Sibayak (smaller volcano) on my own.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Cambodian–Thai border dispute

Do you remember No Men's Land - The Boarder experience story? Unfortunately last few days there were new clashes at this site causing the death of 11 people (mostly solders) from 4th to 8th February 2011. I really hope that they will manage to solve this issue without further casualties.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Meeting orangutans

Half wild orangutan.
Just before landing in Indonesia I decided to go to Bukit Lawang to see half wide orangutans. At the edge of the jungle there is a station taking care about the orangutans. Sometimes they are heeling the injured ones and afterward they are released them back to jungle. Every day they are feeding half wild orangutans and it is possible to see it.
There is also possibility to join the hike in the jungle but I still had my heel slightly damage from fins while diving in Ko Tao so I decided to postpone the hike and observed orangutans only during feeding. And it was an interesting experience.

Indonesia first and second impression

Hanging out at the back of pick up track.

I think I spent too much time in an holiday country. Time to go back to travel to start the last chapter of Asia travel - Sumatra.

I really wanted to take a ferry from Malaysia to Sumatra but they stopped working two months ago. Flights got too cheap... Environmentally scary a bit. Finally I took one hour flight and I landed in completely different world.


Durian does not smell like any other food,
Durian does not look like any other fruit,
Durian does not taste like anything else.
Yes, I think I got addicted on this trip to an amazing fruit, to Durian. But this was not a love from the first sniff.
I tasted it initially in Laos... And it was stinky, smelled like old shoes, and had a strange soft consistency, only a bit harder than butter. Bee.

Hindu festival in Malaysia - day two.

About the first day of Thaipusam festival read here.

The second day of Thaipusam festival was an piercing day... Quite a few devotees had lot of temporary very heavy piercing all over a body. Some of them had hooks in their back and were caring another person or huge platforms with the Shiva. The more physical pain they experienced the more merit from the God they could expect.

Hindu festival in Malaysia - day one.

South Indian girls.
I planned to pass Malaysia on the way to Indonesia and I planned to pass through Georgetown. To my surprise I discovered that my Lao's friend Vik is also on his way to Georgetown. Apparently he was heading for Thaipusam, Hindu festival. I was happy to meet him again and to join this festival as well.

In Georgetown there is a huge Hindu minority. The festival started with a parade crawling around the city streets.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Easy traveling in Thailand

Thai-Burmese women.
I have to admit I have not done real traveling in Thailand. In Thailand I spent my time on interest driven holidays more than traveling.