Sunday, 24 September 2017

Fernweh ≈ Wanderlust pt. IV

If you read the previous part, you might notice the irony at the end of the post. Who knew that within a month afterwards, I'd pack up my things to go home to Indonesia? Well, I didn't. I wasn't going to let that be the end of my adventures, though, I'm still going to roam about one way or another so you better watch this space. Outside of traveling, a lot of things have happened since then—like a lot!—and it has allowed me to acquire more friends from various parts of the world. It's still a dream of mine to visit them someday, but for now I'm just glad to be able to meet up with some online friends from my own country. My life has caught me off guard for years, but this development is the most unexpected incident to have ever happened in my whole life—not even joking—so traveling has taken a backseat like never before.

Bruxelles (Brussels), Belgium (June 2014)
Before I left Germany, I made sure to do some intense travelling. I made sure to visit one last country in Europe—outside of Germany, of course. It should be fitting that it's Belgium, which houses one of the world's Art Nouveau capitals, and it was beautiful! What a better way to bid farewell than to visit a tiny piece of heaven, am I right? Then two months afterwards I also visited Iva's turf—finally visiting Freiburg—and said goodbye to her and Kynann. We even had a blast at Europapark that I'd never thought I'd visit. When I came back to him, Firu finally kept his promise and took me to Hamburg—a city I've been dying to visit for years. The weather was terrible but it was still a trip we both would love to remember. All the while, I didn't even realise that I was terribly down with tuberculosis—even after I fainted in front of Iva, oops!
Hamburg, Germany (August 2014)
Kudus, Indonesia (October 2014)
The past three years I haven't been travelling much, due to financial issues and other obligations. I can't believe how much harder and pricier it is to explore my own homeland—compared to, say, Europe. In fact, it's apparently cheaper to go abroad than to visit certain parts of Indonesia—especially the less populated islands, like Papua and Maluku. But I do want to explore more of the country, so I decided to start small. I started exploring more of my parents' hometowns, Surabaya and Semarang, seeing all these sites that I never even bothered to check out before. Then I started to explore more of my own hometown, Jakarta. I started to discover so many historical sites—which is a given, since the capital city is obviously the hotspot for history. It's gotten me to appreciate more of my own country. I was so surprised to find the various museums and landmarks I never even knew before—and sometimes even the locals haven't necessarily been there too.

Semarang, Indonesia (June 2015)
Surabaya, Indonesia (July 2015)
Jakarta, Indonesia (2016 onwards)
This list makes me rethink my definition for traveling. What qualifies actual traveling for me, anyway? Usually, it's when I've been somewhere and seen pretty much all the tourist landmarks, tried the local food and learnt a bit about the local culture—which, ideally, takes several days. However, sometimes even in Surabaya or Semarang—or Jakarta, really—there are still plenty of landmarks that I've missed or haven't seen yet, but I obviously know the place rather well to say I've traveled there several times before. And, sometimes, to do so requires less than a day—like in Ambarawa—or that without having seen the landmarks I've gotten a feel of what the local culture is like—as is the case in Kudus—or maybe I visited all the landmarks but didn't eat any of the food—such as in Madura. And I really think I don't have to decide right now.

Madura, Indonesia (July 2017)
Ambarawa, Indonesia (August 2017)
It's taken me three years, but this list is finally complete to create one whole post. My hope for the future is simply to be able to take as many chances as I can in regards to traveling and exploring. For now, I feel like I can only afford to travel nationally—financially, if nothing else. I think at the moment it's best to just visit nearby cities and towns, which often comes with cheaper transportation fare—some can even be visited with the commuter line. Although, of course, if the chance ever arises, I wouldn't mind visiting a different country or farther destinations within the country. It would be swell if I could at least leave the island and seek an adventure on different parts of the archipelago altogether. It may take another three years to finish the next list—maybe longer—but I will be sure to document it here, for anyone who might be interested.

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