Monday, November 24, 2003

The Happy Tramp

The Happy Tramp

The city should be a lot quieter today with all offices closed for the first day of the week-long Lebaran holidays. But last night, I could still see many doing their last minute shopping at Sarinah and Sabang. I did some loitering around at Roxy Mas in the evening-- the place was still very busy. Unfortunately the nasi padang restaurants--at least Natrabu and Sederhana at Sabang--are already closed.

It was more work for me yesterday afternoon and night. Though I am making progress everyday, I am still not very happy with my productivity. My mind is filled with the many projects that I want to embark upon and I woke up this morning with thoughts of Bandung.

I've been doing a lot of research about Bandung lately and I hope to make a trip there after Lebaran to verify some of my facts. Most of my trips to Bandung are work-related, so I never really had a chance to visit the places I really wanted to visit--places like Gedung Merdeka and ITB. I've only spent one weekend before in Bandung last year for leisure, staying at the historical Savoy-Homann Hotel. But when you visit on weekends, places like Gedung Merdeka are closed.

To really know a city, you need to loiter in the streets and observe its people. This is what I enjoy doing very much in Bandung and Jakarta. I never believe in shuttling from one tourist location to another. I enjoy a slow leisurely walk in the streets--lingering for a while at a cafe or warung to sample some of the simple food that locals eat and eavesdropping on their conversations, all the while observing their dialect and speech.

I've tried to do the same thing in every city that I've been to. Even in KL. Maybe that's why I don't mind travelling alone for it gives me the luxury to do "boring" things. One learns a lot from loitering. It suits my nature, for I am a bit of a tramp. Sometimes tramps are the happiest people in the world.

No comments: