After my visit to Prambanan, I walked back to the Trans Jogja bus station and people watched. Life in this part of Indonesia is much different than the tourist saturated Bali. I mean there were plenty of tourists at Prambanan, but they were no where to be found at the local bus station which is only a short walk away. Perhaps, not too many foreigners venture to Prambanan on their own – like myself.
I am the type of person who forgets to eat and drink when my mind and body is pre-occupied. While I walked back to the bus station, my stomach started rumbling. This is when I remembered that I barely drank any water while at Prambanan, as the UNESCO Heritage Site amazed me with it’s historical value and architectural designs. I stopped at the first vendor in sight and got some coconut water to rehydrate myself.
As my dehydration headache subsided, I caught the next bus and headed into the city of Jogjakarta, lovingly know as Jogja. I also took the chance for a quick nap while on the bus. I know I know – I must be crazy to close my eyes on a strange bus, in a strange city, in a strange country. But a girl has gotta do what a girl has got to do, I rested my head on my daypack (with the zipper side facing me). When I need a nap, even just a 5 minutes shut-eye does wonders.
When I woke up from my nap, I remembered what the information desk lady told me back at the airport, get off at Jalan Malioboro and I will find lots of great food and souvenirs. So I chatted with a fellow passenger and he assured me that I am headed in the correct direction and there are 2 bus stops I can choose from on that street. I still remember how crowded the bus became as we got closer and closer to the heart of the city. Then literally we ALL got off at the first stop on Jalan Malioboro.
The elevated bus stops is something uncommon for me, I kept fearing someone will get pushed off from the platform when we pulled up. For some strange reason, the bus door is at least 2 feet off the ground and instead of having steps, all the bus stops are elevated platforms. I haven’t seen this in all the cities I have traveled to at this point in time – so I naturally had to take a photo.
Once I stepped off the bus onto the elevated platform, I was surrounded by people trying to get on the bus. Talk about “Wake me up!” I thought it would be less crowded once I stepped onto the sidewalk but it did not get better. Don’t get me wrong, the street is very wide and accommodates multi-lane traffic with very wide sidewalks, but people were just everywhere. It felt like a weekend, instead of a Monday, perhaps it was a public holiday.
As I walked alone the sidewalk, a man approached me and ask if I need help. My mind starts churning 1000 miles an hour, the skepticism, the frightful solo traveler became alert. My mind decided to think negative thoughts instead of positive thoughts – “Is he trying to sell me something?” “Do I look lost??” “Do I look THAT out of place? Guess my daypack is a bit out of the ordinary.” Lo and behold, he was just simply a kind man, wanting to advertise the Jogjakarta Art Festival. Now I remember the lady at the info desk mentioning this event and this man is simply directing me to the closing ceremony. I thanked him for the information and kept walking forward, which also is the direction he wanted me to walk towards. However, I had to focus on the most important task at hand – Fill my tummy with delicious food!
There was plenty of street food available but I wanted some air conditioning to cool my body. Luckily I found THE mall of Jogjakarta – Mal Malioboro. I found everything I needed at that moment in time – clean bathroom facilities, air conditioning and plenty of restaurants!
When all my physical body needs were met, I ventured back outside to check out the Art festival and find my bus stop to catch the bus to Borobudur.
On my way to the bus stop, I even found the local post office so I could send postcards back to Canada! What a bonus!
Now stay tuned for Part 3 of my Day trip to Jogjakarta to find out what happened at Borobudur and my thoughts of this crazy long day trip.