Thursday, August 02, 2007

Sumatra Holiday

Had a wonderful time in Sumatra, trying a lot of the traditional “Pandang” style food where they bring everything out at once and you just pick what you want from the plates. Watch out for the little hidden green chillies tho! They bite!

Spent a bit of time Medan, Padang and Bukit Tinggi (High Hill or Tall Hill), passed on the Banda Aceh S&M festivals but generally tried to see as much as possible in 10 days. Temperature range was hot and muggy (Padang) to jumper and coat weather (BT) so made a nice change from the normal (for us at the stump anyway). The other surprising thing was the condition of the roads, which ranged from good to excellent. Drivers however remained as nutty as ever but with more fatal results. On two occasions we arrived just after two “bemo” buses had plunged down a ravine spreading bodies everywhere. The actual yearly road toll must be truly horrific.

A little way out of Padang we came across this rock which (I have no idea if this true and/or the translation is right as my Bahasa Padang is not so flash). Apparently the man fought with his love and she flung herself into the sea and drowned. Upon realising what he had lost, he fell to the ground, weeping and was turned to stone. To this day the “rock cries” even when the tide is out.

Sumatra: One of the Greater Sunda Islands and the second largest island after Borneo (Kalimantan) in Indonesia. It is separated in the northeast from the Malay Peninsula by the Strait of Malacca and in the south from Java by the Sunda Strait.

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