Returning to the United States over the holidays was a trial run for leaving the country for good. In preparation for returning, I pined for all of the locations within Indonesia that I had yet to visit; Borobudur, rain forests, dormant volcanoes, Lombok and Gili, et cetera. Thus, now that I am back in Jakarta, it is my goal to travel within the country every other weekend.
My first trip was out to Bandung with my co-worker Mike, his girlfriend, and his sister. Bandung is the capital of the province of West Java and is a pretty considerable city itself. Mike spent a month out in Bandung last year during his training for the ETA program with Fulbright and so he had considerable knowledge of the area. We left shortly after work on Friday and got in town to find an affordable hotel and get to bed early for a big day on Saturday. Saturday we visited a dormant volcano, Gunung Tangkuban Perahu (also known as the Mountain of the Overturned Boat). The trip out there, including the hike through the woods afterward, was very similar to the area surrounding Mount St. Helens, yet in a tropical rain forest instead of a temperate one! As we made our way down the mountain, we came to some natural hot springs were we were able to boil eggs in one of the pools while we put our feet in another and got a mud massage. After the volcano, we headed to an Indonesia hot springs resort where we could relax a little bit more. Overall, the day was very busy and a lot of fun, yet at the same time very relaxing. The only downer was that I was unable to find my camera while packing on Friday and so pictures will be delayed until I can get copies from Mike's girlfriend.