So let me take you to the island of Java…
But before that, since I’ve been taking the same journey for the past 7 years or more, I had to put my ‘tourist google’ on to blog about it. Important tips from me when you are taking the northern java train journey; keep your view to your eye-level and above. (」°ロ°)」
The northern railway takes you from Jakarta all the way to Surabaya in about 9 to 12 hours – depends on what train you are taking. Start the journey from Gambir Station, Jakarta, then I went to the east side of the island. Even though we could see on Google map this railway was on the northern beach of Java island unfortunately the train does not run close enough to have the beach view. If you took morning train, I will recommend you to take A and B seats, where you can enjoy the beautiful Mount Slamet or in Java, it means Safe Mountain.
Gambir Station nowadays has improved a lot than before. They have lounge, starbuck, dunkin’ donuts, some local restaurants as well as convenient stores. Even buying tickets is faster with online bookings then we can just print the boarding pass with the booking reference number on the self-ticketing machine at the station, just like we do at the airport. They call the self-ticketing machine as CTM (Cetak Tiket Mandiri). ヽ(°〇°)ﾉ
that big polkadots suitcase is mine!!
Today is the PERFECT day to unleashed my inner blues! And also a perfect day to skip work as well. 〜〜(／￣▽)／〜ф
Flower Dome at Gardens By The Bay was currently having “Blue Beauties” theme which is why I was expecting to bathe myself in blue petals there on Friday afternoon. A bit sad tho, I could only saw about 30% of blue petals. Most of them are purple. Then magenta, white and slight pinkish color. And I didn’t take pictures of all the flowers since 30% of them are the usual habitant of Flower Dome. (￣^￣)ゞ
I know you like purple color flowers ~ or the pics I took ~ or otherwise you wouldn’t clicked on “read more” below^^… But I must remind you before you clicked on that button, please do respect the ownership of those pictures. Thank you. ( ･ω･)☞
And here we go… (＃￣□￣)o━∈・・━☆
so finally I had my very first Cherry Blossoms (🌸さくら🌸) EVER!!!
SAKURA (桜) is a general name for plants that belong to the subfamily of the Rosaceae. the English name for sakura is cherry blossom. Sakura can be written in Chinese characters/kanji (桜), in hiragana (さくら). It is often recognized as a symbol for fragility, grace, and short-lived beauty. Sakura day is celebrated on 27 March. 🌸
there are more than 600 species of sakura in Japan. flowers that have up to 5 petals are called hitoe (一重). flowers that have 5 to 10 petals are called hanyae (半八重). flowers that have more than 10 petals are called yae (八重). 🌸
🌸 🌸 🌸
day-6, Tuesday 13 September 2016, sunny!!
Let’s just talk for few more paragraphs here and make it short. About the 6th day in Bangkok, the day my flight back to SG. I went to MBK in the morning and was lured by this “free thai ice tea for foreigners, just show us your passport”. So I dragged my bag to the 5th floor to get this free drink. Surprisingly, the place was in the middle of food court, and it was an exclusive area where you can only get inside if you’re a foreigner. Inside this exclusive area there were a lot of international food stalls you can name it; all over europe and asia. The food was expensive and not-so delicious, but I got the free thai ice tea I was aimed at. And it wasn’t superb either. Please note, foreigner, all those free stuffs will not always lead you to a cheap and smart decision. You can always try other local food outside instead of this exclusive area. (!҂ `з´ )
I only got 1 hour at this shopping mall, which was another thing I regret. This was a huge shopping mall with reasonable price for nice clothes and bargain. Too bad I didn’t have much time as I must rush back to airport. (ノ_<。)
Here are some randoms pictures I have left on my phone…
day-5, Monday 12 September 2016, morning drizzling!
I woke up too early this Monday morning.
It was drizzling, I walked slowly to Chong-Nonsi BTS Station, took train to Stadium Station. Once I’ve arrived at the station, all the shopping malls were not open yet. I spent my 30 minutes at the Art Café sipped my morning tea and waited patiently until the shopping malls open. <(￣ ﹌ ￣)>
day-4, Sunday 11 September 2016, drizzling but sunny later!!
Today was Sunday… And you know what that means!
Me going to attend Sunday Mass!!! ♡＼(￣▽￣)／♡
It was drizzling when I opened my eyes this morning. I rushed to nearby 7/11 which was about 100m from the hotel, bought some bread and milk for breakfast, then hailed a taxi to the Cathedral. It was a short trip from my hotel and only cost me no more than 40B.
day-3, Saturday 10 September 2016, another sunny day!!
From the same Asia-Discovery website this time I booked another half-day tour around the city for 980B. This time they brought me to the Grand Palace and Emerald Buddha Temple just next to the Palace. I was having my breakfast at the lobby hotel when they finally picked me up 1 hour later than what stated on the voucher I printed out. And once again, I was the last one to be picked up from my hotel. (￣ω￣)
day-2, Friday 9 September 2016, sunny day! YAY!!!
The main reason I finally didn’t cancel my Thai trip was to enjoy elephant riding. So I needed help from someone local to take me there, since those elephant farm were all located outside Bangkok and it won’t be easy to reach there by myself. I’ve been looked some local tour guides around Bangkok who offer a day trip to enjoy elephant riding, and finally I chose one local tour, despites knowing any reputation of this tour agency. This is their web; it looks confincing enough for me, so I immediately paid online, printed out all the required voucher and all settled two days before my holiday started. <(￣︶￣)>
I was ready and waiting at the lobby before 6:30 AM, since they said they will pick me up at 6:30 in the morning. I already had my melon cake I bough yesterday from Neil’s Tavern, and patiently waiting. On the voucher I already printed out, they said I can give them a call if they late for more than 15 minutes. So after 30 minutes no news from the tour guide, I did call them with a help from the hotel staff. The tour guide finally picked me up at 7:30 AM. I must note that the traffic jam in Bangkok is quite horrible same as Jakarta, so one hour late consider fine. (￣▽￣*)ゞ
I was the last person they picked up from hotel. The rest of the group was 5 Japanese girls and 1 Dutch men who married with one of the Japanese girls. So please note, being late for 1 hour is consider ‘normal’ in Bangkok, considering their horrible traffic jam. Be patient with that. ┐(︶▽︶)┌
day-1, Thursday 8 September 2016,
I arrived in Bangkok before 11am. Followed the way to airport exit, I found this limousine stall that offered me a ride to my hotel for 1200B. I was in shocked because from the info I got, it said the price from airport to hotel was only 300B to 400B depends on the traffic jam! I supposed this was my very first Bangkok-scam, so I showed them my map with the information I got. And apparently they said it was because they are limousine so they offer higher price. Well, I wonder how many person travel with limousine in Bangkok when taxi is 3 or 4 times cheaper. (；⌣̀_⌣́)
Anyhow, from the limousine stand, I went downstair to the basement and finally found the taxi queue with the help from 3 hunky men. Apparently there was a taxi queueing machine that we should get before a taxi will stop for you. Raising your hand and ask a taxi to stop for you is not working in this airport. So might as well just join the queue to get the taxi number. Lucky for me, the line was empty and there was no queue that time.
The journey from the airport to my hotel which located in Surawong road, was about 50 minutes – it was Thursday mid-day, no traffic jam. And remember when you get into a taxi in Bangkok, always asked them to turn on the ‘meter’. Even there was a ‘meter’ sign on top of the car, but it doesn’t always mean the driver will turn on the meter for you, except you asked for it. The funny thing about this taxi driver who took me from airport to hotel, the meter said I must pay 230B, but he doesn’t have small changes! I gave him 1000B, he said he doesn’t have change. Then I gave him 500B, still no change. I gave him 300B. still no change! This can’t be serious! How can a taxi driver doesn’t have small money at all! Is this my second scam??! Lucky there was another passanger waiting for a taxi outside the hotel, and she gave small changes for me. ＼(￣▽￣)／
so i had this plan to travel together to Thailand with a friend since last year, but due to some reasons, she canceled it just a day after i booked my flight and hotel. i asked around my friends and everyone already got their own plans for their long weekend. because i didn’t have anyone who wants to travel with me, i didn’t have a boyfriend and i didn’t have plan-b, mom thought i should stay at home, wallow in my room and swipe on tinder. well not literally, but she thinks a girl should not travel alone. period. (｀ー´)
i’m an obidient girl. i listen to mom even though we live 1000 miles apart. well at least for about one month. ╮(︶︿︶)╭
it was on monday morning, just three days before the day i supposed to go with my friend, my rebellious side kicked in. all my gut was telling me to go anyway. and so it was decided. i spent whole monday in the office to recheck my itinerary. i rebooked the same hotel on monday night. then on tuesday i finished up my final itinerary then booked local tours so i can enjoy the elephant riding. on wednesday i met my new boss who apparently has been stayed in bangkok for nine years. he told me about where should i go and where i should not go. some very important tips for a solo traveller like me, which I will tell you on my stories later. then on wednesday night i bought some necessary stuffs that i’ll bring along with me, packed my stuffs and ready to go. <(￣︶￣)>
i didn’t tell my mom–obviously. but based on “i shouldn’t be alive” tv series i watched, i know i have to tell at least someone or two to let me know where i’m going, with whom i go, and when i supposed to return. so i informed all my colleagues about my solo travel.
and so here’s the story… ( ･ω･)☞