• Indonesia - Arrival on Batam The ferry from Singapore to Batam Island

    I couldn't really enjoy the little bit of luxury, namely a wider bed in my capsule hotel. Because at half past one in the night a ruthless horde of South American women came up, who rumbled and yelled as if the bedroom belonged to them. I was really through with this capsule hotel. In Japan I found them so pleasant, but there were also Japanese people who are much more considerate. With the noisy, thoughtless ways of us westerners, staying in a capsule hotel feels more like a storage barracks. Garbage flies everywhere.

  • Indonesia - Escapism thoughts in Lake Toba My afternoon workstation on the balcony

    The Indonesian guests in my guest house partied loudly until one o'clock in the morning last night. Or maybe they just sat together. I thought for a moment if I should be angry about this, but basically it's exactly the right thing to do. After all, it only went to one. When I remember how many times we sang until dawn without giving a thought to anyone else.
    Rather, I became aware of my narrow-mindedness as a solo traveler, because I went to bed at ten o'clock, only read a few pages and then fell asleep. Only to be woken up twice by the revelers. My apology is that I'm still lacking sleep from the late-night bus ride and the signs of a cold in my bronchi and sinuses.

  • Indonesia - Flower Power Rafflesia arnoldii - The world's biggest flower

    This morning at nine Roni picks me up on his motorbike. I want to see a few things around Bukittingi with him today. I have my own helmet with me and am well equipped for a motorcycle tour. Roni suggests that we don't do a cultural program today, but look at the largest flowers in the world, some varieties of which grow in the area.

  • Indonesia - I'll stay At least some daily structure

    I've had my first perfect day on Samsosir, the idyllic island in Lake Toba. After a night of almost ten hours of sleep, I woke up at a quarter to nine in the morning. I probably slept properly for the first time after this sixth night. It is certainly due to my hike I did yesterday. It's no secret to me that I only sleep well if I've moved a bit during the day.

  • Indonesia - Interviewed English students and their interviewee

    The fourth day on the island in Lake Toba after the third night. Routine is slowly setting in. Solid night's sleep, only to be woken up at 6:15 am by a banging and thumping like someone rearranging furniture. Because nobody does that even in Indonesia, I went out onto the balcony to have a look. It must be the boats on the shore wall, the waves lapping against their hulls.

  • Indonesia - Island of Harmony The village of Tuktuk on the island of Samosir in Lake Toba

    It is hard to believe that the day before yesterday I wanted to break up my tent and flee from the island of Samosir in Lake Toba to find my peace in the jungle around Ketambe in North Sumatra. Today, after the fourth night in Tuktuk, the small town on the east side of the island, I walk around for two hours and inwardly praise myself for the harmony of the place and the joie de vivre and the loving interaction of the Batak residents with each other. At the same time, I calculate in my head the maximum number of days I can stay here before I have to continue to the north of Sumatra to start my journey home in several stages.
    Strange how fickle I am.

  • Indonesia - On the edge of Mount Merapi volcano Still in active service: The volcano Gunung Merapi

    I stayed at Bamboosa Guesthouse in Bukittingi. It's actually not a guesthouse, but more of a homestay. Two bedrooms are probably for rent, one of which I have. But first I brush my teeth, take a shower and crawl into bed to catch up on some much-needed sleep that I didn't get on the bus ride last night. Deep and sound asleep, I am the muezzin, there must be half a dozen in the area, at half past midnight calling for prayer over the loudspeaker for half an hour. I've got my best earplugs in and still you can't sleep like that. They'll do it again tomorrow morning just after five and then again a good hour later. This will not change during my time in Indonesia on Sumatra. I still want to go up to Banda Aceh, Sharia applies there and the muezzin will definitely not be fewer.

  • Indonesia - To Sumatra The ferry to Dumai: looks cool and it's freezing inside too

    A day of travel with almost 1000 kilometers on water and land is behind me. Because I couldn't get any further from the Indonesian island of Batam yesterday, I was only able to start my onward journey to the main island of Sumatra today. Yesterday evening I made an appointment with the taxi driver who drove me to my accommodation yesterday, that he would pick me up at the hotel after morning prayer and take me to the ferry terminal. I think it's a bit early, but a quarter of an hour doesn't matter. At 20 to 5 the muezzin calls to prayer and wakes me up. At half past five my alarm clock does the same thing again. At six o'clock I get in the car to the port.