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Articles in Sumatra

From Malaysia to Sumatra by Bicycle and Ferry

November 15, 2015 – 7:18 pm
Indonesia Galaxy 003

Sunday, November 15, 2015
I’m already in Sumatra inside a fairly grubby little hotel in the coastal and port town of Tanjungbalai. However, before I describe the hotel, I should go back to getting the tourist visa. For Indonesia, that can be challenging because they have a lot of rules about visas, and they change their rules often. Then they aren’t very good about keeping their …

First Full Day in Tanjungbalai, Sumatra

November 16, 2015 – 7:31 pm
Indonesia Galaxy 025

Monday, November 16, 2015
Well, according to my smartphone (which has access to the Internet), it is 8:30 in the morning. According to my watch, alarm clock, and computer, it is 9:30. It seems that the Internet is much smarter than me because it knew that the time in Sumatra was one hour different from the time in Malaysia. I honestly had no idea. The trip …

The Obstacle Course – Walking in Tanjungbalai

November 17, 2015 – 10:28 pm
Indonesia Galaxy 029

Tuesday, November 17, 2015
I seem to be stuck in a time loop. Every morning is exactly like the previous one. I wake up after a long sleep but still feel fatigued. Then I hear the rain drumming on the roof. This morning was a bit different in that I also heard loud peals of thunder. My understanding was that during the monsoon season, it would …

Changing Hotels and Meeting the People of Tanjungbalai

November 18, 2015 – 10:51 pm
Indonesia Canon Elf 026

Wednesday, November 18, 2015
In the past, I’ve always had either a notebook and a pen (a very slow method of writing for me), or my AlphaSmart NEO (which is a brilliant and simple writing keyboard). This is the first time I’ve had a laptop computer let alone a laptop and a smartphone. It’s a bit overwhelming to have all this power at my fingertips, particularly …

Facebook Culture and Martabak Mesir

November 19, 2015 – 11:16 pm
Indonesia Galaxy 095

Thursday, November 19, 2015
This should be a short journal entry today. I don’t feel the urge to write much, and I didn’t do very much yesterday that I could write about. It was sunny in the morning, which was an encouraging sign, but then the rain clouds moved in and I had to run for cover for much of the day. I had plans to …

Hitting the Streets with My Real Camera

November 20, 2015 – 11:26 pm
Indonesia Canon Elf 037

Friday, November 20, 2015
Day seven of my time in Sumatra has begun with more rain. It rained for much of last night, and it is quite wet outside. On the positive side, the rain brings down the temperature. I imagine that in the non-rainy season, it is much, much hotter here.
Yesterday, I finally got out what I think of as my real camera. Till then, …

A Visit to an English Cram School

November 21, 2015 – 12:34 am
Indonesia Canon Elf 038

Saturday, November 21, 2015
Yesterday, Sri invited me to visit her English school. It was all terribly confusing and somewhat unsatisfactory. The confusion extended even to the name of her school. In Indonesia, they call these schools “courses.” Sri attends the Alex Essential English Course. Every time I called it a school, someone corrected me and called it a course (pronounced “curse”). In my mind, you …

Photowalk Across the Bridge in Tanjungbalai

November 22, 2015 – 12:38 am

Sunday, November 22, 2015
It rained steadily all last night, but the sun is out now and the skies are bright and clear. The plan for today is to take my bike out and ride back to the ferry dock where I arrived and then beyond it to follow the road all the way to the coast and see what there is to see. I’ll bring …