SULU SAIL IN INDONESIA: “NOT A TOURIST BUT A TRAVELLER”

By | August 11, 2012

Neldy Jolo


Many wanted to visit Bali, as I wanted too. Travellers speak and write their experiences in their blogs and videos how exciting the views, beaches and other ruins and remnants of the ancient belief of Hinduism and how affordable the food are.

Tourists are different than travellers, they speak how they spent their money eating at any fast food and drinking at any expensive coffee shops and shopping for branded garments. Different stories can be read about travellers and tourists. Help me to find the differences between the two, if you have the idea.

When I searched in the internet, the very popular food there is the Ayam Betutu Khas Gilimanuk. Do not ask me about the cost just prepare your thousands. The most popular that people used to visit here are Monkey Park, Gunung Kawi (Similar to Langkawi in name). I cannot speak much about it until to see it personally.

Forget about Bali; let’s see what is found in the Surabaya. By just reading something about Surabaya in many blogs, it is known to be the second largest city in Indonesia, the second capital after Jakarta. My friend told that they wanted to visit Mount Bromo.

It is really interesting to mountaineering but I can no longer do it for it now as I used to do it during college days, this is especially knap-sacking: putting many things inside the bag. My back cannot resist. So no backpacking but single-side-shoulder packing as put my bag only in left or right shoulder. I am also familiar about Surabaya in a name, labelled in any cigarettes coming from this city. Also found here is one of the Wali Songo, Sunan Ampel said to be near Kampung Arab.


I supposed is going to visit Malang and Solo, but the time is not cooperating. I only encounter the name Solo when I was researching about Sulu. Solo and Sulu seems similar. I prepare to visit Jogjakarta as I have known it many years ago from my Indonesian friend I met in Thailand in 2007. He was studying in UGM, Universitas Gadjah Mada. Gadjah Mada was the one that pledged to unite the “Malay Archipelago” he called “Nusantara” in his Sumpah Palapa (Spices Oath).


I searched in the www.kereta-api.co.id about the train schedule, from Jogja to Solo and Malang. From Jogja to Solo is only around more than an hour. For Malang it is around two hours. But I decided to stay in Jogja to visit the UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the Candi Borobudur and Candi Prambanan. I just happened to read it sometime in high school, now is in my sight. I cannot describe in one word how fascinating the sites are. The architectures are hard to believe to be like that if not the power of Allah granted to human mind and psychology to create such. The measurement seems accurate. The technology seems modern.



Near Jalan Purwodiningratan in Jogjakarta, the tricycles known as Becak are going back and forth, also the horse-carriage called Andung. These traditional transportation modes are best to ride to mutar- mutar or keliling keliling, for short roaming around the city. Bicycle for rent is also available, but I do not know the price. It is known as Sepeda.


Tricycle in Jolo, Sulu is similar to this one, there was also Caleza, the horse-carriage transportation in Jolo back in the time of Spanish living in the quarter of smallest Walled City.  This Walled City in Jolo is qualified to become one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Wait for my coming post for my travel in Sulu Archipelago few months ago: Bongao, Siasi, Jolo and Zamboanga. My personal reminder is, “please do not be a tourist but a traveller”. If you have your own definition, be it for I am not to change your perspective. It just a matter of how I perceived the matter.



Let’s stop talking senseless here; I have the tips to those who wanted to travel light and hassle-free as knapsacker and backpacker. I do not know if you find this useful. My tip as traveller for one week in different places and sites is to prepare:

1.  1 Knapsack (Medium)
2.  1 Pants  
3.  1 Short pants
4.  3 Shirts
5.  1 Sarung for prayer
6.  Toiletries not cosmetics
7. Extra plastic bags (preparation for anything you got in the travel)
8. Change your currency prior to your travel to country’s destination (better keep dinar and dirham).

Next time if you want to join me prepares your rope and stick, I will ask you to please “Welcome Aboard” to prepare the Sulu Sail with the Sulu Pirate as not a tourist but a traveller and a sailor. To cut the story short: Indonesians are genuinely and generally polite and hospitable. And be reminded that every place in the world, the vendors are full of perseverance to let you buy their products, as in Indonesian vendors do, in every tourist sites.


Of course one of the best to support is the street artists in Malioboro Street who sing, play musical instruments and draw your portrait while eating for 20mins in Rp.50K.  Most of all do book your airfare tickets in advance for cheap prices.  Please let me know what other travel tips you wanted to know.

Oh ya before I forgot, Indonesia was created from Latin and Greek word “Indus and Nesos” means “Island” which became as Indian Archipelago. This is the effect of colonialism in Nusantara that divides the island into a state base country that need to be divided by document as human identification.

In the Caliphate time, there is no such state and stateless and poverty. Colonialism created poverty through banking system. The banker became rich, while the bank depositors became poor. Their real money, gold and silver changed into fiat money, the paper money which the value is only on its self as paper. Beyond that there is none.

I would like to remember that people in Likusantara (Nusantara) are relatives that never met in their lives and whenever met there is no single reason for them not to love to each other and to strengthen the power of neighborhood. They shared culture, arts, history and heritage. It is always good to be having freedom in travelling. There are more to come with Kurampings.

PS:
Thank you to Kah Diddings and The Sulu Gypsy for being in Jogja. 
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