We are almost at the halfway point of our journey. I would like to thank everyone who has left a comment or sent an email. Your kind words are most appreciated. I apologize for not being able to respond to each of you. A few of my readers might like to know how I go about doing the blog on the ship. A multistep process is used to create the blog. When there are photos, as is the case on most days, I download these when we return to the ship or at the end of the day. If we have been on an excursion there might be 300-400 photos. These are quickly scanned and I try to select the 25-35 which might be used. Often these are not necessarily the “best” photos either quality wise or in composition, but are the ones which I feel will help tell a story or simply give the reader a feel for where we are. These are edited in Lightroom and then saved to a file. I then open a document in the Outlook email program and import the photos into the document. Then I start writing the commentary and photo captions. When the document is complete, I log onto the ship’s internet and email the file to WordPress where it is processed and posted to my blog. This minimizes my internet usage which cost about 25 cents a minute (if you purchase in 1000 minute blocks!).
If I actually compose the post on the WordPress website, which would allow me better formatting possibilities, it would probably cost around $15.00 per post in internet time! Likewise I only monitor comments every few days because it does require me to log onto WordPress. So…. Just because I don’t respond to your comments and emails, doesn’t mean they aren’t read or appreciated!
We picked up our pilot on time this morning, but were almost 45 minutes late in getting docked and ready for debarking. The reason was the congestion of the harbor port. We realized the ship was moving very slowly so we began to watch with fascination the ships in this complicated port. Container ships, freighters and even military vessels were everywhere. We were the only cruise ship seen all day.
We were late to begin our excursion which was scheduled for 9 hours. Jakarta is not a port where you can easily “do on your own”. There is absolutely nothing at the port itself because it is entirely commercial and it’s almost an hour’s ride into Jakarta from the port location in Tanjung Priok. Thus we decided to take a tour which would get us out of the city area.
Jakarta is the capital and largest city of Indonesia, and one of the most populous urban agglomerations in the world. Located on the northwest coast of Java, Jakarta is the country’s economic, cultural and political center, and with a population of 9,761,407 as of December 2012, it is the most populous city in Indonesia and in Southeast Asia. The official metropolitan area, known as Jabodetabek (a name formed by combining the initial syllables of Jakarta, Bogor, Depok, Tangerang and Bekasi), is the second largest in the world, yet the metropolis’s suburbs still continue beyond it. Established in the fourth century, the city became an important trading port for the Kingdom of Sunda. It was the de facto capital of the Dutch East Indies (known as Batavia at that time). Today, the city has continued as the capital of Indonesia since the country’s independence was declared in 1945. I am not certain of the total metropolitan population but we did visit the city of Bogor the home of our guide Adi. He said Bogor’s population alone was over 2 million.
Very much a city of continuing growth, based on survey by Brooking Institute, in 2011 the economic growth in Jakarta ranked 17th among the world’s 200 largest cities, a jump from its 2007 ranking of 171. Jakarta has grown more rapidly than Kuala Lumpur, Beijing and Bangkok.
A few shots of the port as we SLOWLY sailed in.
Jakarta is a huge modern city. We didn’t go to downtown, but the next two photos which I took from the web will give some idea of its size and how modern it is.
I took this photo from the bus. I just liked the colors. I suppose it is easier to remember which COLOR apartment you live in… Remember this photo and the next were taken far from the city center.
We were on a freeway and it seemed there were almost as many high-rises on the side opposite the actual city as there were in the city itself. Or perhaps the other high rises were one of the outlying suburbs which make up the metropolitan area.
This is Ali our guide for the day. He was very knowledgeable, and his English was ok.
A mother & child on the sidewalk.
Just an interesting looking gentleman.
We traveled to Bogor a small city of about 2 million located about 45 minutes from Jakarta. Here we visited the Safari Park. I was quite impressed. You can drive through with your own vehicle or take the park buses. We continued on our tour bus which wasn’t the best way to see the park. The ride through the park lasted about an hour and the animals were many, they were all healthy, the park was very clean and well kept. They had themed areas which were very well done. In fact, I found it much more enjoyable than Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Best of all, admission was free.
Hungry, Hungry Hippo… Visitors are not only allowed, but encouraged to feed the animals. Along the road to the park were scores of venders selling bananas and carrots for the visitors to purchase to feed the animals. As a result often of there wasn’t food, the animals would go hide.
Otter than real….
I forgot the name of this fellow, but obviously some type of pig.
And the Lion Sleeps Today….
No doubt who is King of the forest.
A rare albino tiger.
Count my stripes, I dare you to count my stripes…
This is a real photo of real goats. It looks like something you would see on display in Cabela’s.
Taking it easy. For $1.00 US you could get your photo made with this big guy. No thanks…
You have to admit, he is beautiful.
Next we visited a tea plantation. It was very educational. It was raining, but this time of year it rains every day in Bogor.
This is one of the tea leaf pickers. It is a very physical job. Only women pick the leaves. We were told with their smaller more delicate hands they could pick the young tender leaves which were the most desirable.
She is quite lovely.
The cultivated hills filled with tea.
Lilly pads at the Bogor Botanical Gardens.
A typical scene along the street.
There is much construction in Jakarta, it looks like mostly apartment buildings.
We make it back to the ship with about an hour to spare. The one thing about Indonesia which we westerners are not real happy with is the toilet facilities. You never know what is awaiting you. It of course is worse for the girls than us guys. We have experienced everything from simple holes in the floor to actual commodes which you flushed by dipping water from a bucket. At some of the “nicer” facilities you performed your necessities while peering over a wall at the people passing by. It is just a little different than what we are accustomed to. In addition you are usually charged about 2000 rupiahs, about 15 cents for the privilege.
The harbor as we were leaving. At this point we were probably 45 minutes past leaving the dock. There were boats everywhere. As we left the Captain made his evening update and he said this was the tightest berthing he had ever performed. That explains why it took us so long to dock this morning…
Tomorrow is a sea day and we cross the equator again, then it’s on to Singapore. It is getting hotter!