Hi there it's Jenni! Just a quick blog for you this time, I think I'll have to give you guys a break after the way Dan went on and on in his last epic!
We're in Java and we like it here! The public buses go according to the timetable, the coffee is fantastic, the roads have a hard surface, people give way to pedestrians, and they seem to obey the traffic lights! Madness!It's very different from Sumatra, especially if you compare the public buses. In Sumatra it took us one day 12 hours to travel the distance of about 170km, but then about 2.5 hours to do 95km another day. The best was 1.5 hours to do 10km. The distance really doesn't give you any idea of how long it will take to get there. Imagine all this done in the boiling hot tropical sun with our huge backpacks to wrestle with, on roads that sometimes have more resemblance to the craters on the surface of the moon than what you would call a road.
This will take me nicely to the next bit, where I'll be telling you about how we've spent a lovely 7 days in one city! We're in Yogyakarta, and have found a really lovely hotel with a swimming pool, lush garden, unlimited coffee&tea, daily afternoon cakes brought to you on a tray, need we say more?
Another odd thing is that the bits of Indonesia we've seen so far seem to be inundated with Dutch people! We wanted to give special mention to Terence and Geety from Amsterdam, whom we first met at Lake Toba (where they stayed in OUR hotel and ate in OUR restaurant), and who then continued to stalk us via Bukit Lawang (where they, again, stayed in OUR hotel and ate in OUR restaurant), back to Medan (where they also stayed in OUR hotel and used OUR Internet cafe), and this continued all the way to here in Yogyakarta, where they kept "bumping into us" on the streets. In the end we decided to confront them about their stalking problem and after a few beers and a meal, we haven't seen them since. ;)
That is one thing that we have really noticed over the last few months, various towns or resorts in whatever country often seem to have a large population of tourists from one particular country. It is kind of weird as you walk around and everyone is Swedish (Koh Tao in Thailand), English (Cameron Highlands in Malaysia), German (Perenthian Islands in Malaysia) and French (Cherating in Malaysia) and, well you get the point! It's still really odd, it's like we're travelling around Europe!!! Not really sure how that happens, they're not on organised tours, they're all independent travellers, but end up in these specific towns in South East Asia!
Anyway, tomorrow we're giving up our little restful sanctuary, and going to climb a volcano called Gunung Bromo! We've taken in all your wishes we tried to avoid danger, and in the end decided not to climb Merapi, one of the most destructive as well as the 6th most active volcano in the world, which is what we had first planned (it's just outside the city we're in at the moment, so it would be a short bus journey, if you get the point). This means that we've got a 10 hour bus journey ahead of us tomorrow! After the stint with the Gunung Bromo volcano which is active, but not quite so deadly (which we'll climb at dawn to get the view of sun rising behind it, with a view of Bali in the background) we'll be heading to Bali for some sand!
Sorry we haven't had any exciting chases and adventures this time, the closest we have had is a handful of over enthusiastic rickshaw drivers following us down the road. We'll put some new photos up soon, for you to marvel at. Oh and we tried (with a little help from Jamie) to create a map with our route showing, so you can see all the little obscure places we stay at, but it isn't brilliant yet, but we'll get the hang of it soon!
Lots of love to all,
Jenni & Dan